Over 200 people are feared missing following the glacier burst, which led to heavy flooding in Dhauliganga and Alaknanda rivers, said Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Monday while adding that rescue operation is underway.
“Around 203 people are missing including 11 dead bodies are recovered as of now. We were not aware of a subsidiary company’s project in Tapovan till yesterday. We are estimating that 35 people are stuck in another tunnel. Rescue operation is underway,” said Rawat.
Meanwhile, Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank said Union Home Minister Amit Shah is reviewing the situation frequently.
“We are constantly receiving directions from the Centre with Prime Minister Narendra Modi keeping track. Home Minister Amit Shah is also reviewing the situation in every half an hour,” Pokhriyal said.
“It is a very difficult situation, but ITBP successfully rescued people from the first tunnel and now they are working on the second tunnel which is approximately three kilometers long. NDRF and the military are also on it. By afternoon we can expect some positive results,” he added.
Meanwhile, a team of SDRF-Uttarakhand Police carried out a search operation around Srinagar Dam.
“We were informed that 178 people were issued passes here (tunnel). Of which, 15 were rescued yesterday. The rescue operation is underway in another tunnel. There is a possibility that 35 people are stranded in it. Priority is to rescue them as soon as possible,” said Neeru Garg, DIG Garhwal range.
MHA informed that the second tunnel’s mouth has also been opened up. Slush and silt clearance is in progress.
On the other hand, aerial rescue and relief missions have resumed with Mi-17 and ALH helicopters flying from Dehradun to Joshimath with disaster relief teams on board said the Indian Air Force.
Tapovan Hydro-Electric Power Dam, also known as Rishi Ganga Project was completely washed off following a glacier burst in the Chamoli, said the Indian Air Force’s initial report as Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) deployed at Joshimath has undertaken recce of the affected areas.
Rawat has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakhs each to the kin of those who lost their lives due to the glacial burst.
A glacial broke in the Tapovan-Reni area of Chamoli District of Uttarakhand on Sunday, which led to massive flooding in Dhauliganga and Alaknanda rivers and damaged houses and the nearby Rishiganga power project.