A major earthquake measuring 6.4 on the Richter Scale, originated in Sonitpur, Tezpur of Assam, India jolted Northeast India on April 28. The earthquake originated in Tezpur of Assam and tremors were felt across Assam, North Bengal, and other parts of the Northeast and subsequently, there were seven aftershocks after the first tremor shook up the suburb. As per the reports obtained by the National Centre of Seismology, the first earthquake was recorded at 7:51 am and it was centered 43 km west of Tezpur in Assam. There was severe damage all over the region. Numerous videos emerged from Assam which showed walls and windows collapsed tragically. While a road in Sonitpur developed a crack following the impact of the earthquake and several buildings and walls in the area smashed into dust.
Massive Rock and Ice Avalanche at Chamoli, India
A destructive landslide happened at Chamoli, Uttarakhand on February 7 which impaired two hydropower plants, and more than 200 people have been killed or have gone missing. The massive avalanche roared down a Himalayan valley, transforming into a deadly debris flow upstream from the first of the two hydropower plants. 27 × 106 cubic meters of rock and glacier ice collapsed from the steep north face of Ronti Peak. It moved boulders greater than 20 meters in diameter and washed the valley walls up to 220 meters above the valley floor. The snow/ice/rock mass avalanche, along with a portion of jointed rock mass having an approximate dimension of 400m x 700m x 150m, from the left valley wall of Raunthi Gad.
Cyclone Tauktae, India
Cyclone Tauktae, the fifth strongest storm to hit the Arabian Sea since 1998, hit the west coast of India over four days from May 14 till it made landfall on May 17, 2021. It took at least 91 lives, desecrated thousands of houses, boats, and state infrastructure in Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, and Gujarat. Probably, 45 workers of the ONGC rafted the Mumbai coast are still missing, and a troop of 16 fishers has been still missing off the Kanyakumari coast. 25 boats were parked at the western coastline and the flood tides were so high that the boats were shattered into pieces. It became an extremely severe cyclonic storm on the 17th when the core winds went up to 200kmph. It passed away from Mumbai, about 180 km away, and made landfall on the 17th evening. IMD Mumbai described the cyclone as the “longest traveling cyclone” on the west coast.
Simlipal Forest Fire, India
The Simlipal Fires have raged for 10 days, consuming endangered flora and fauna, wiping out medicinal plants, and taking the place of innumerous wildlife & Adivasi communities in 8 out of 21 ranges in Simlipal, on March 9. The fire in Similipal biosphere reserve came at a time when Odisha topped the list of forest fire incidents with 8688 fire spots and Odisha saw 11,708 forest fires since November 1 last year, the highest among all the states.
Assam Floods, India
The late August monsoons in Assam have caused floods killing scores of people and leaving thousands homeless. Nearly 5.74 lakh people were affected. The Lakhimpur & Nalbari district has been affected in the worst possible manner. The Government relief camps accommodated people from 21 districts. Barpeta, Baksa, Biswanath, Bongaigaon, Chirang, Dhemaji, Dibrugarh, Golaghat, Jorhat, Kamrup (Rural & Metro) Lakhimpur, Majuli, Morigaon, Nagaon, Nalbari, Sivasagar, Sonitpur, Tinsukia, and several other villages were overwhelmed by the floods. Dams, Roads, Banquettes, and various other substructures have been consumed by the flash floods. Owing to this, Wildlife has been severely disrupted by the heavy rainfall. Over 1,200 villages of 61 revenue circles were under floodwaters. The floodwaters from the Brahmaputra River and its tributaries submerged 39,831 hectares of agricultural land in the flood-hit districts.
Glacier burst at Joshimath
The massive rock and ice avalanche caused the Glacier to burst and a portion of the Nanda Devi glacier desisted from it. The sudden flood in the middle of the day in the Dhauli Ganga, Rishi Ganga, and Alaknanda rivers; all magnificently linked tributaries of the Ganga triggered widespread panic and large-scale devastation in the high mountain areas. Two power projects; NTPC’s Tapovan-Vishnugad hydel project and the Rishi Ganga Hydel Project were tremendously damaged with scores of laborers trapped in tunnels as the waters came rushing in. Over 190 people are missing and 32 have lost their lives.
Kerala Floods, India
Heavy rainfall in the monsoon season caused severe floods in Kerala. It started on October 15, and is ongoing and creating havoc for the locals and resulted in the death of at least 35 people, as of now. Dozens of people have gone missing. The maximum amount of damage due to rainfall in Kerala has been reported from the Kottayam, Pathanamthitta, and the Idukki districts. Peerumedu in Idukki received record rainfall of 270mm. Dams are extended to reach their full capacity and small towns and villages in the hilly areas remain cut off. Kerala’s repeated and devastating situation is bound to draw the world’s attention for it shows the emergence of the climate crisis.