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Uttarakhand: Joshimath sinking day by day, Panel recommends construction ban and relocation to Govt.

Large patches of Joshimath, the old magnificent town situated at an altitude of 6150 feet in the state of Uttarakhand, is sinking day by day. An expert panel founded by the state government of Uttarakhand has cautioned the residents of Joshimath that the areas are sinking because of natural as well as human-induced reasons.

Joshimath in Uttarakhand

An expert panel set up by the Uttarakhand government has found that several pockets of Chamoli district’s Joshimath town — a gateway to the Badrinath shrine, the Hemkund Sahib gurdwara, the popular hill station of Auli, and the India-China border — are sinking due to both man-made and natural factors. As a result, the government will be putting together an action plan that may include a construction ban as well as relocation of local residents from “unsafe” areas according to sources.

The panel’s report points to ‘ground subsidence’ — a gradual settling or sudden sinking of the earth’s surface due to removal or displacement of subsurface materials — that has induced structural defects and damage observed in almost all wards of Joshimath.

The committee comprising scientists and geologists was formed on the recommendation of the Chamoli district magistrate in July following repeated complaints from the local populace about sinking areas and deep cracks appearing on the buildings.

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