As Uttarakhand‘s death toll increased to 52, Union home minister Amit Shah reached the flood-ravaged state on Wednesday night to take stock of the rescue and relief work. He will conduct an aerial survey of the affected parts of the state on Thursday. Five people were reported to be missing.
Shah had spoken to Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami on Monday and assured him of all possible help from the Centre to tackle the crisis. On Wednesday, the state government resumed the Char Dham Yatra, barring in Badrinath where the road caved in. Officials said they were working on repairing the road and would soon resume the pilgrimage even there.
As per the information available in the state emergency operation centre in Dehradun, 28 deaths were reported from Nainital district.
Apart from three Indian Air Force helicopters and police force, the National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force were pressed into service for search and rescue operations. Three MI-17 and ALH choppers were on standby at Bareilly for further requirements. Due to bad weather, choppers could not reach Pithoragarh on Tuesday and returned to Dehradun, said officials.
Till Wednesday, 11 deaths were reported from the Champawat district while six deaths were reported from Almora. State administration was trying to repair 18 roads in the rural parts of Almora district. The movement of vehicles was stopped near Swala and Bhartoli on Tanakpur-Champawat national highway. The movement of vehicles was disturbed on Rishikesh-Badrinath national highway at Kimkholi, Radang, Kanchanganga and Lamgarh.
In Chamoli district, the administration was trying to restore movement of traffic on 86 rural roads. There was no problem in the movement of vehicles on the Rishikesh-Gangotri national highway as well as Rishikesh-Yamunotri highway. Reports from Rudraprayag district said the Rishikesh-Kedarnath national highway was open for traffic.