The death toll in the Malin landslide disaster mounted to 82 even as NDRF jawans continued a relentless rescue operation, now reduced to the recovery of bodies lying under the massive debris for the last four days.
According to district control room, the dead listed so far included 30 males, 41 women, ten children, with one body still remaining unidentified.
Adding to the adverse weather conditions and intermittent rains, slowing down the movement of heavy machinery like JCBs, cutter and dumpers, was the overpowering stench from the rapidly decomposing bodies with which the NDRF personnel had to put up, wearing protective masks.
The initial estimate of the fatalities in the July 30 tragedy that flattened 44 houses in the village was 160 and with the recovery of 82 bodies, it looked a half way mark for the rescuers, who are using power generators to carry on search work at night.
Eight persons have been pulled out alive including a three-month old infant named Rudra, who survived miraculously along with his mother.
The state government has announced an assistance of Rs five lakh to each of the victims’ families with an assurance of their total rehabilitation.
Maharashtra Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Patangrao Kadam had earlier said the recovery of bodies could take two more days in view of the inclement conditions.