Siliguri: In a tragic incident highlighting the dangers lurking in the aftermath of the Sikkim floods, a 7-year-old boy lost his life, and several others sustained injuries when a mortar shell, believed to be a remnant from the devastating floods, exploded in West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district.
A Devastating Discovery
The incident unfolded on Thursday when local residents of the Chatra Para area, situated in Chappadanga Gram Panchayat, Kranti Block, Jalpaiguri District, spotted an object floating in the Teesta River and attempted to retrieve it. Their intention was to salvage items carried downstream by the river, including tree trunks and gas cylinders.
However, the situation took a tragic turn when the object in question was revealed to be a deadly mortar shell. Upon contact, the mortar shell detonated, causing chaos and resulting in severe injuries.
Lack of Awareness
Tragically, it appears that the local community in this flood-affected area was unaware of the warnings issued by government authorities regarding the potential presence of explosives and ammunition in the Teesta Basin. Both the Sikkim government and Jalpaiguri police had issued advisories, cautioning residents against handling or picking up any suspicious items found in the region due to the grave dangers associated with such objects.
Victim and Injured
The victim of this heart-wrenching incident has been identified as Sainu Alam, a 7-year-old child whose life was cut short in this unforeseen tragedy. Additionally, several others were injured in the blast, including Latifa Khatun, Laku Mohammed, Ruksana Parveen, Ramzan Ali, and Gumer Ali.
The Ongoing Impact of Sikkim Floods
The recent flooding in the region, triggered by a glacial lake outburst flood, has left a trail of destruction and challenges in its wake. As communities attempt to recover and rebuild, incidents like this one serve as a stark reminder of the hidden dangers that can emerge from floodwaters.
Authorities are urging residents to remain vigilant and report any suspicious items to the appropriate authorities, emphasizing the need for safety and awareness as the region grapples with the aftermath of the floods.
This tragic event underscores the importance of community education and awareness campaigns to prevent such accidents in the future and to ensure the safety of those affected by natural disasters.
Gangtokian Web Team, 06/10/23