Joshimath subsidence: Number of buildings developing cracks rise to 849

Residents take part in a sit-in protest to halt the demolition of two hotels deemed unsafe by authorities, demanding that they be first compensated for cracks that have developed in their houses in Joshimath town in the northern state of Uttarakhand, India, January 11, 2023. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

Joshimath (U'khand): The number of buildings developing cracks in subsidence-hit Joshimath rose to 849 on Monday, out of which 165 are located in the danger zone, even as the evacuation of affected families to temporary relief centres and dismantling of two unsafe hotels continued in the town.

A total of 800 people, belonging to 237 families, have so far been shifted to safety by the district administration, according to the daily bulletin of the Disaster Management Authority.

Joshimath, the gateway to famous pilgrimage sites like Badrinath and Hemkund Sahib and international skiing destination Auli, appears on the edge of a precipice with gaping cracks appearing on buildings, roads and public facilities.

According to officials, 615 rooms in 83 places have been identified as temporary relief camps in the town in which 2,190 people can be accommodated. Besides, 491 rooms in 20 buildings have been identified as temporary relief camps in Pipalkoti outside Joshimath municipal area where 2,205 people can stay, they said.

The district administration has so far distributed Rs 301.77 lakh worth of interim assistance to 396 affected families.

"Around 284 food kits, 360 blankets, 842 litres of milk, 55 heaters/blowers, 36 daily use kits, and 642 other relief materials have been distributed to the affected," an official said.

Health check-up of more than 637 people living in relief camps has been done, while health tests of 33 animals were also done in the affected areas.

Meanwhile, Jyotishpeeth Shankaracharya Swami Avimuketeshwaranand began a 100-day 'mahayagya' at Nrisingh Mandir on Monday for the safety of Joshimath and its people.

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