Fact Finding Report on Illegal Mining in Kheda of Almora District in Uttarakhand

On 2nd June 2019 at 3:30 pm, a natural calamity occurred in a village named Kheda which is situated in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. A sudden cloudburst devastated the village, causing heavy damage to 3 out of the 5 hamlets that were directly affected. Three of the hamlets, namely Kheda, Jukani and Bajpur comprised of residential and agricultural land.

The cloudburst resulted in extremely heavy rainfall which brought down boulders, heavy stones and sand along with it to the plains, tarnishing the village of Kheda. As a consequence, a man lost his life while trying to save an ox which also got trapped beneath the debris that destroyed two houses along its way to the plains. A total of 8 houses were completely and/or heavily damaged along with 2 cowsheds.

Since adequate measures were not taken, the village still consists of broken houses with debris that are yet to be cleared. It has been 5 months since the disaster but the people of the village have continued to live with the trauma since no measures of rehabilitation and of clearing of the village has been undertaken by the district administration. Consequently, at least four families have relocated to other areas of Uttarakhand as they were not able to cope up with the trauma.