Koslanda landslide tragedy

There was a landslide in 1997 too ....They requested to remove the line-houses in 2005 But where can they go?

Recording the greatest tragedy of landslides of Central Hill country of Sri Lanka, 2 kms of Koslanda, Meeriyakanda was permanently erased from the map of Sri Lanka by the landslide which took place at about 7.45 a.m. yesterday (29). In 1997 Naketiya Yaya of Koslanda had experienced a landslide in which 7 people died.

What the Building and Research Institute had said in the year 2005 was that residents of this area should be evacuated.
It was reported that a crowd of about at least 350 resided here and that a section of people who had set out on their jobs and about 70 children who went to school were able to save their lives.

Though there are various discrepancies in the figures quoted by the Minister of Disaster Management, the Police Spokesman and Investigating Officers, it is with regret that it should be mentioned that at least over 200 lives have been lost in this tragedy.

What several persons in the village who were able to save their lives said was that "some houses have sunk as deep as 100 feet being covered by earth and rubble and that at some places the houses have sunk about 50 feet deep and no traces of their beginnings could be found.

There were about a 100 or 120 in 7 rows or lines. There is news to say that about 6 have escaped death. Two days before some gentlemen came and asked to leave the village. So where can these people go? What they could have done was to take the people to some place. The village I saw that day is now a massive pit of mud. There's a stream of water passing over that pit of mud". This was what a young man said.

"About 300 may have died because of this landslide. It will not be possible to bring them out. This village was situated over Nayaketiya which was subjected to a landslide these days," a villager said.

What one husband said was that when the landslide started, both he and his wife had begun to dart and that when his wife was coming behind him, he had looked back and he had jumped, to see his wife getting covered by the mudslide. He is now stationed at the adjoining village Ganesha Tamil Maha Vidyalaya refugee camp. There are about 300 who take refuge in that camp.

The Minister of Disaster Management, Mr. Mahinda Amaraweera who visited this place of tragedy says that the place where the landslide occured, Koslanda, Meeriyakanda is about 2 kms in extent and as according to those engaged in rescue operations say, that the area is further landslide-prone, a severe catastrophe could occur with the potency of a landslide developing if the earth is dug further in search of dead victims.

It is said that 10 schools would be closed till next 3rd.

Further scenes of the landslide, from BELOW