Kathmandu: Nepal Wednesday said that 123 people who went missing following a deadly landslide are dead, pushing up the toll to 156.
The landslide took place early Saturday at Mankha village in Sindhupalchok district.
The district administration office, Sindhupalchowk, Wednesday declared those missing as dead as there was no possibility of recovering them alive from the debris.
Rescue workers have only found 33 bodies from the debris of landslide-hit settlements.
Sindhupalchok Chief District Officer Gopal Prasad Parajuli said the administration had declared them dead as per the recommendation made by the village development committee and demands of the families whose relatives had gone missing in the landslide.
"The missing persons were declared dead after the nature of the site showed that there were no possibility to find the bodies," said Parajuli.
Parajuli added the administration has provided Rs.40,000 each to the relatives for the final rites.
Family members of those missing in the landslide performed the last rites by making effigies out of Kush, a grass considered sacred according to Hindu mythology.
As many as 129 houses were damaged in the landslide.
A huge pond was created after the massive landslide blocked the Sun Koshi river and attempts are underway to release water gradually.
Several attempts to clear the debris that block Sun Koshi River hit a sang due to rainfall.
Authorities have continued their efforts to funnel out the water.
After creating a channel with two explosions on the riverside Saturday, the army team used a water canon Sunday at the landslide site to widen the channel.
"But this outlet was unable to lower the level of water," said Nepal Police Superintendent Subodh Ghimire.
We are worried that this outlet will push the debris as it flows through and cause more landslides, he said.
The downstream of the river up to Bihar, India, would be affected if the lake outburst in Sun Koshi.
After landside obstructed the major river of Nepal, an artificial lake has been created with a length of 3 km. It is 400 meters wide and 45 meters deep.
Water level in the lake has been rising at a pace of 200 cubic meters.