Deforestation a major cause for landslide: Report

Deforestation and destruction of natural water canals caused irreparable damages on the top layer of soil on the hills and resulted in landslides in hilly regions of Mudigere in August, according to the findings of a report submitted by experts from Geological Survey of India (GSI) to district administration.

The geologists from GSI Kapil Singh, Kamal Kumar and geologists from the district mines and geology department M J Mahesh and Dayanand had recorded their observations based on their field visits at 48 places. The team also had visited Malemane, Madhugundi, Baluru, Durgadahalli, Alekhanhortalli, Malleshanagudda and nearby
villages.

Many natural canals buried deep in Bettadakadu had hindered the natural flow of water. This resulted in water flowing in multiple directions. With the path of many canals changing directions, low lying areas, fields and plantations were inundated with rainwater. Many trees were also uprooted and trenches had been created, the expert committee had mentioned in its report.

The geologists observed that damage was caused to the topmost layer of soil on the mountains in many regions. Loosening of soil had resulted in landslides.
Many hilly regions had been leveled to construct houses, roads and to create plantations, thus disturbing the natural landscape, the report observed.

The report by experts had recommended a slew of measures to be taken up by the district administration at the areas that had witnessed massive landslides.
The measures include the construction of canals to facilitate free flow of water, checking soil erosion in slopes, curbing activities such as construction of houses and plantations closer to hills, on banks of the river and forest areas.

Chikkamagaluru district Additional Deputy Commissioner Kumar said that the most important aspects in the report will be listed and printed on handbills to create awareness among people.

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