The Manipur landslide rescue team recovered one more body from the Ijei River in Noney district on Wednesday, Day 7 of the search and rescue operation that was launched on June 30.
The deceased was identified as Subedar Umesh Lama of 107 Territorial Army, B Coy. The body was recovered around 3.30 pm Wednesday, official sources said.
As of Wednesday, a total of 48 bodies have been recovered after the massive landslide hit the Northern Railway worksite and an Indian Army company location on the intervening night of June 29-30. Not one body was recovered on Tuesday.
While as many as 79 people are hit by the landslide, the total bodies recovered included 29 from TA, 11 from VSC, two from railways though one is yet to be fully verified, three from BIPL, one from NIPL Infra Projects, and two from those engaged by TA and BIPL, according to official data.
Another 13 bodies are yet to be traced, while 18 others were found alive from the landslide debris and are undergoing treatment. The 18 landslide survivors included 13 personnel of the Territorial Army and five civilians, offical sources said.
The missing included one from TA, six from VSC, and one from Railways besides the villagers.
It may be mentioned that a portion of the Ijei River was blocked by the landslide debris, totally disrupting the flow of the river water and posing a challenge to the rescue operation team in the search for the missing victims.
Also, the risky and large expanse of the landslide debris area makes it all the more difficult to speed up the recovery of the missing bodies.
Despite the many challenges, including the poor weather condition, the search and rescue work continued at the incident site. The joint rescue team included personnel of the NDRF, SRDF, Indian Army, Assam Rifles, Manipur Police, MMTA, Fire Brigade service and several volunteers.
Meanwhile, Governor La Ganesan visited the landslide survivors who have been undergoing treatment at the Assam Rifles Multispecialty Hospital at IGAR (South) HQ, Mantripukhri, in Imphal on Tuesday. He visited all the seven injured Army personnel of 107 Infantry Battalion (TA) in the hospital and expressed solidarity with them and prayed for their speedy recovery.
The mortal remains of the TA personnel have been flown to their respective home stations.
A solemn wreath-laying ceremony for two soldiers (a subedar and a havildar) of the Territorial Army, who died in the tragic Manipur landslide, was held at the Bir Tikendrajit Airport in Imphal on Tuesday (July 5).
After the ceremony, the mortal remains of the subedar, identified as Sajit Subba from West Bengal, and the havildar, identified as Chandan Gurung of West Bengal, were flown to their hometown. Their bodies were recovered on Monday.
Homage was also paid to other TA personnel who died in the tragic incident with a wreath-laying ceremony held at Bir Tikendrajit Airport in Imphal on June 4. The mortal remains included that of an Army officer and four soldiers.
The mortal remains of 43-year-old Lieutenant Colonel Kapil Dev Pandey of 107 Territorial Army, which was recovered on Sunday was flown to Delhi. The Lt Col hailed from Nehru Nagar East, Chhattisgarh.
The mortal remains of the other four recovered on July 3 - 40-year-old havildar Deepkar Pradhan from Darjeeling, West Bengal, 42-year-old havildar Chandan Gurung from Darjeeling, West Bengal and 23-year-old Rifleman Pritam kumar Dutta from Murshidabad, West Bengal were flown to Kolkata.