- The threat of severe earthquakes in the Himalayan region, has prompted India to put hundreds of landslide dams under constant monitoring so that they do not break with catastrophic consequences.
- The home ministry has specified new standard operating procedures or SOPs to monitor the dams.
- According to the new SOPs, LSDs frequently fail catastrophically and lead to flooding,often with high casualties, due to their rather loose nature and absence of controlled spillway.
- The new procedures are aimed at averting or mitigating the threats emanating from LSDs on rivers.
- The Centre has roped in the National Remote Sensing Centre, Central Water Commission and the Indian Air Force as part of the new SOPs.
- The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) will monitor any intervention, if required.
- The SOPs include controlled use of explosives to break the compacted earth mass of the LSD.
- The SOPs also involve use of satellite imageries from the National Remote Sensing Centre and National Technical Research Organisation.