History of Disasters in Nagaland

Earthquake

Nagaland has been hit by many disasters in the past. The most notable ones are the Great Shillong Earthquake on 12th June 1897 which measured 8.7 in the Richter scale and the Assam Tibet earthquake on 15th August 1950 which measured 8.5 in the Richter scale. However, since those days there were no facilities to record and to document, there is no local data supporting the disasters. However interviews with the older generation people reveals that the 1950 earthquake was very much felt by Nagaland, and it even resulted in the destruction of many houses in certain areas. It was even said the earth opened up and buffalos were buried alive.

Landslide

Landslide is a major disaster that keeps affecting Nagaland specially in Monsoon, when heavy down pour is experienced all over Nagaland.

It is a fact that properties worth lakhs and crores of rupees have been carried away by these Landslides. Some of the major Landslide Disasters that Nagaland has faced are - in August 2001 Dimapur area experienced a cloud burst which lasted almost for one hour. This gave rise to so many landslides in that area, particularly the Paglapahar region which experienced the heavy down pour. In a stretch of just 4 kms on National Highway 39, seven major slides occurred which brought traffic to a standstill. In this incident 1 Tata Sumo was crushed where 3 people were killed and some injured.

In August 2003 the whole New Market colony in Kohima Town was affected by landslides. Many houses were razed to the ground, and many more were made unfit for habitation. The road was affected very badly, that for a year it had to be abandoned. Property worth lakhs were destroyed by this slide.

The most tragic landslide that affected Nagaland in the recent past was the May 26th 2005 Landslide that occurred in Mokochung Town. In this pre dawn landslide, 14 people were buried alive, so many more injured and damage to property was extensive.

Wokha town was affected very badly by a landslide in August 2006. National Highway 61 was affected very badly. Extensive damage to property was reported.

During September 2006, Zunheboto Town was affected by a Major landslide. This resulted in extensive damage to property.

On October 17, 2007- about 150 metres of National Highway 39 near Kiruphema went down almost 400 metres. This resulted in the complete blockade of the highway for 2 days.

Flood

Flood affects all the low lying areas of Nagaland bordering Assam. In the year 2005, the Township of Tuli and the adjoining areas were very badly affected by flood. This left the area marooned for many days.

The different colonies of Dimapur Town remained submerged during 11th - 24th September 2008. This includes Dobhinalla, Super market, Nagarjan, Burma Camp, Walford, Sachu Colony, Nagagaon, Khermahal, Netaji Colony, Naharbari and Airport Areas. Examinations that were going on during this time were badly affected.

Fire

Fire disaster is the most common disaster in Nagaland. During the Indo-Naga conflict, many villages were razed to the ground.

On the 28th April 2009- 30 houses were burned in K. Sachu Colony, Ward 14 Dimapur. Many families were rendered homeless and property worth Rs.31,00,000 burned.

On the 6th Feb 2009 52 houses were razed by fire in Naharbari Colony. Property worth 20 lakhs was burned.

On the 23rd of April 2008 the biggest fire disaster in memory affected Nagarjan Colony in Dimapur. Two precious lives were lost, while 310 houses were burned to ashes. Property worth more than 1 crore was burned to ashes.

On Jan 29th 2008, 100 houses along with 8 garages were burned to ashes in Golaghat Road. Property worth 1crore was charred down.

High speed wind

Storms and high speed wind are a recurring phenomenon every year. On the 29th of March 2008, a few buildings have been razed to the ground while electric poles and trees have been uprooted in Mokokchung District. In Kohima District, high speed winds have destroyed mobile towers during March and April 2009.

Drought

It has been passed down by our ancestors that droughts have occurred in Nagaland in the past. However there are no documents and records to prove them. 2009 is the first year that Nagaland is facing a drought like situation in 3 districts of the state namely Peren, Dimapur and Mon. Jalukie valley in Peren District, which is called the ‘Rice bowl of Nagaland’ has been very badly affected by drought this year. Huge areas of paddy cultivable land has been left because of shortage of water.

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