Uttarakhand glacier burst: 430 rescued, 8 dead in avalanche; Amit Shah assures help

At least eight people died and 430 were rescued after a glacier collapses triggering an avalanche close to the Indo-China border in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district on Friday.

At least eight people died after an avalanche occurred near the Indo-China border in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district on Friday. The avalanche occurred after a part of a glacier collapsed beyond Sumna on Sumna-Rimkhim road where labourers were engaged in road construction work.

Rescue operations were launched by the Indian Army immediately and 430 persons were rescued. Eight bodies have been recovered so far from the avalanche site. Six persons have sustained critical injuries and they are being treated at an army camp.

“Border Roads teams from Joshimath clearing the area from Bhapkund to Sumna. It is expected to take another 6-8 hours,” an official said. The area has been witnessing heavy rains and snow for the past five days.

“Rescue operations were launched by the Indian Army immediately….Rescue operations to locate other labourers at both the camps are continuing,” said an army official.

In a tweet, the Indian Army said, “A BRO Camp came under an avalanche in the afternoon of 23 Apr during heavy snowfall in Sumna area of Joshimath Sector in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. While 55 BRO persons could be mustered at first count, blizzard conditions kept the rescue operation at bay till late evening.”

Keeping road connectivity in the area is crucial as it gives access to forward locations like the contested Barahoti area on the border that has seen transgressions from the Chinese.

Barahoti is an 80 sq km contested area along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is about 400 km from the state capital of Dehradun and 100 km from Joshimath, the location of a brigade headquarters.

In 1958, India and China listed Barahoti as a disputed area where neither side would send their troops.


Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat tweeted about the incident, saying an alert has been issued and he is in constant touch with the BRO and the district administration for updates.

In another tweet, Rawat said Union Home Minister Amit Shah has taken immediate cognizance of the incident and assured the state of all help.

Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said he is monitoring the situation closely.

“Unfortunate that a disaster has struck Reni Village of Uttarakhand owing to a glacier burst on Dhauliganga river. I am monitoring the situation closely. CWC is on alert and a team led by a secretary level officer has taken charge of the situation,” he wrote on Twitter.

Source: India Today


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