Uttarakhand on high alert has heavy rains pummel hill state, six killed


PTI, Jul 10, 2023, 8:07 AM IST

Representative image (Source: ANI)

Dehradun: Incessant rains and landslides in Uttarakhand claimed six lives on Sunday and authorities in the hill state have sounded a red alert as water level rose in all major rivers, including the Ganga, amid a forecast of more heavy showers in the next two days.

In view of the inclement weather, Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami urged the people to avoid unnecessary movement and requested pilgrims coming to the state to plan their journey only after getting the latest weather information to avoid inconvenience.

In a tweet, he said he has directed the administration to remain on ‘red alert’ mode to deal with any kind of situation.

Several roads were blocked due to landslides, affecting normal life as well as hindering the Char Dham pilgrimage for which lakhs of people visit the state. The water level of major rivers of the state including Ganga was rising, officials said.

A jeep carrying 11 pilgrims from Kedarnath fell into the river Ganga in the Muni ki Reti area of ​​Tehri Garhwal district.

State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) Inspector Kavindra Sajwan said that with the help of divers, five people were rescued and the bodies of three pilgrims were recovered. A search operation is on for the other three missing people.

The passengers were residents of Delhi, Bihar, and Hyderabad.

The accident occurred between Malkunti bridge and Hotel Anand Kashi near Gular on Rishikesh-Badrinath National Highway, Inspector in-charge of Muni Ki Reti police station Ritesh Sah said.

Sah said that five rescued passengers have been admitted to the government hospital in Rishikesh.

A large number of trees were uprooted in the Kashipur area of ​​Udham Singh Nagar district. Due to heavy rains, two houses in Missarwala village of Kashipur area of ​the district collapsed, killing a couple and injuring their granddaughter.

According to the Uttarakhand State Emergency Operation Centre, the victims have been identified as Naseer Ahmed, 65, and his wife Mohammadi, 60. The couple’s 18-year-old granddaughter Mantasa was injured in the incident and has been admitted to the hospital.

In another incident in Uttarkashi’s district’s Barkot town, a policeman out on duty died after getting hit by a stone in a landslide. Another home guard who too was posted there barely escaped the stone fall.

The incident took place on Yamunotri National Highway where Head Constable Chaman Lal Tomar, 45, was posted for security of commuters. He was rushed to a local hospital, where doctors declared him brought dead.

Disaster Management Secretary Ranjit Kumar Sinha has instructed the district magistrates to be vigilant and take adequate precautions in view of the rising water level of the rivers.

They have asked the administration to continuously monitor the water level of the rivers, not to switch off their mobile phones and allow any movement of tourists in higher Himalayan regions during heavy rain warnings.

The Uttarakhand Police has also tweeted and asked the Kanwariyas to be vigilant in view of the rise in the water level of the Ganga in Haridwar.

Meanwhile, the meteorological department here predicted heavy rains on July 11 and 12 in eight of the state’s 13 districts – Chamoli, Pauri, Pithoragarh, Bageshwar, Almora, Champawat, Nainital and Udham Singh Nagar.

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