The death toll from a landslide in India’s western state of Maharashtra rose to 26 on Saturday, a disaster relief official said, with dozens still feared trapped under layers of mud and slush two days after the incident.
The landslide occurred on Thursday night in the remote mountain hamlet of Irshalwadi, about 60 km from Mumbai, flattening several houses.
The hamlet is estimated to have been home to at least 225 people, more than 80 of whom managed to escape.
The Times of India newspaper reported on Saturday that around 80 people were still missing.
“We are working on our technical equipment, our rescue techniques,” S B Singh, an official with the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), told Reuters.
“We cannot judge as of now how many people are still stuck,” Singh said, adding that four more bodies were pulled out from underneath the mud on Saturday.
Visuals from news channels showed rescue teams, wearing bright orange raincoats and carrying digging tools, trekking up the mountain to the site of the landslide.
Rescue operations are being hindered by incessant rainfall, poor visibility, and the hilly terrain, Singh added.
There were about 16 to 17 houses affected by the landslide and many families have been relocated, the official added.