Tag Archives: Natural disaster

Uttarakhand Floods: Nature’s Fury or Have We Dug Our Own Graves? – Part VIII

In the penultimate part of the Uttarkhand Floods series, Chandan Das wonders about why India can’t foresee a terror strike or a natural disaster! Why do Indians act only after lives are lost, and even after that, simply engage in blame-games instead of learning lessons?

How does the Meadow flower its bloom unfold? Because the lovely little flower is free down to its root, and in that freedom bold – William Wordsworth

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Wanna hear some numbers?

# Over 50 tourist buses queued up. Suddenly, stones started raining on the buses. Continuously for 12 hours.

# Four-storey, 52-room hotel cave in in front of your eyes.

# Before the disaster, the number of mules in Gaurikund was estimated to be 8,000. Now there is no word on how many animals have perished or the conditions of those that have survived.

# 500 roads have been damaged and 200 bridges washed away makes the problem of rescue even bigger.

Oh no, the Man didn’t dig his own grave, it was just the Nature’s “Fury”!!

When will we learn our lessons?

Last year, we Indians were ruing shortage of rainfall and this year, they have been rattled by a fast advancing monsoon. The way various north Indian states have been crippled by the onslaught of monsoon, especially Uttarakhand, it raises one pertinent question: Is Life in India so cheap ? Why is to so difficult to understand the basics of a security culture. Whether there is a terror strike or a natural disaster, it is only after  blood is spilled and lives are lost that we decide to act. Just feeling proud of being a an emerging super-economy and the biggest democracy isn’t enough. We also need to get our basics right. But so ill-prepared are we to cope with the smallest deviation from the normal that lives are lost and property destroyed, year after year, even when the rainfall in this ecologically fragile region does not exceed the norm. But we aren’t helpless: we’ve failed because, though we’ve done our homework on how not to fail, we haven’t actually turned these lessons into practice. But it would leave behind a significant lesson that messing up with Himalaya’s eco-sensitive zone is just filled with dangers !!

So was it just a nature’s fury or have we dug our own graves?

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Garhwal Diaries 10 – Enroute Rishikesh

The drive was long from Sitapur to Rishikesh. It was Monsoons so splashes of rains accompanied us every now and then. And then there were landslides. Yes. Here are a few snaps:

IMG_0315Snapshots on my way

IMG_0319Random shots

IMG_0323Landslide captured from the car

IMG_0322A closer look at the landslide

IMG_0331Road blocked due to landslide