A 6.7 magnitude earthquake hit the northeastern India on January 4. The epicentre of the quake was 33km west from Imphal, the capital city of Manipur. According to the government, the quake resulted in the death of 8 people, while 308 others were injured, 419 houses fully damaged, 2500 houses partially damaged, leaving about 8,000 people displaced.
Soon after the disaster, our North-East Regional office along with our local partners swung into action and carried out a rapid assessment and provided immediate relief assistance to the families hit hard by the disaster.
As part of our emergency response, ActionAid provided assistance to around 500 persons of 83 households which were affected severely by the earthquake. 63 houses, which were partially damaged, were repaired and 23 houses, which were totally damaged, were constructed under the emergency project.
Following are the activities carried out as part of emergency response effort:
Meetings with District Administration and civil society organisations: We have conducted meetings and civil society bodies to identify most affected villages in Tausem, Nungba, and Tamenglong sub-divisions of Tamenglong district. Selection criteria of villages under the project include: (a) remoteness of the village and are not very well connected by road and (b) not-reached out by any NGOs and the Government. These meetings and our preliminary impact assessment visits in the affected villages has enabled us to finalise list of 14 villages where project was implemented.
Damage assessment and village meetings: We have conducted house to house visit to identify the worst affected houses in association with Village Authority and women’s groups in the village. We have ensured that the Village Authority and women groups select the poorest and most vulnerable families through door to door visit. Two rounds of meetings were carried out to finalise list of beneficiaries of the project. After endorsement of the Village Authority, we have prepared village-wise list of beneficiaries, whose houses were partially or totally damaged.
Community awareness programs on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and safety and precautionary measures: The interventions provided opportunity to provide awareness on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and safety and precautionary measures among communities during the community meetings that were held to implement the project activities. Village leaders, women leaders, teachers and other community members attended the meeting.
Orientation of masons and carpenters on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and shelter construction with DRR features: To start repairing and construction of shelters, we organised cluster wise orientation of masons and carpenters on shelter construction with Disaster Risk Reduction features. Manipur being in the Earthquake Zone V, which most of the carpenters and masons are not aware, they were given awareness on what is Earthquake Zone V. They were given orientation on retrofitting and other DRR features in repairing and construction of the houses. We have also promoted use of locally available materials for construction of house.
Reconstruction of fully damaged houses: As per the door to door visit, we have identified 21 fully damaged houses in five villages namely; Nungba, Raungdai, Tajekaphun, Reangpang and Kambiron. These houses were mud block wall house (MWH), locally known as Leirangkai. Such houses received maximum damages during earthquake and made unsafe for the inmates. Under the project we have constructed simple tin-roof mud-plastered or tin or bamboo matt-wall houses as villagers considered MWH no more earthquake resistant and safe to live.
Repair of partially damaged houses: Under the project we have repaired 76 houses, which are partially damaged. Most of the houses are retrofitted and repaired to make the houses safe and live-able. The repairing works include retrofitting pillars, walls, mending cracks developed on walls and floors etc.
Outcome of our response activities:
Increased awareness on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and safety and precautionary measures among the communities: The community meetings which provided information on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and safety and precautionary measures has helped communities to increased awareness on these aspects. Most of them said that these are information are new to them.
Increased awareness on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and shelter with DRR features among masons and carpenters: As many as 20 masons and carpenters, who were part of reconstruction work, were given orientations on Earthquake Seismic Zone V and shelter with DRR features among masons and carpenters. All of them said the information are new to them and are beneficial in reconstruction and future construction work in the area.
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