A glacier broke off in Joshimath in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district on Sunday, causing a massive flood in the Dhauli Ganga river and endangering the lives of people living along its banks. Massive destruction is feared. More than 150 labourers working at the Rishi Ganga power project may have been directly affected, said State Disaster Response Force DIG Ridhim Aggarwal.
“Representatives of the power project have told me that they are not being able to contact around 150 of their workmen at the project site,” she said.
Though details are awaited, several districts, including Pauri, Tehri, Rudraprayag, Haridwar and Dehradun, are likely to be affected and have been put on high alert.
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Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat appealed to people to not spread rumours through old flood videos. He said all districts concerned have been alerted and people have been asked not to go near the Ganga. Rawat cancelled all his programmes scheduled for the day.
Rawat is likely to visit Chamoli to take stock of the situation. ITBP and NDRF teams rushed to flood-hit areas in Uttarakhand to undertake relief and rescue work, officials in New Delhi said.
Rafting has been put on hold in Rishikesh
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in Assam to campaign for Assembly elections, has said he is reviewing the situation and has spoken to Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and other top officials.
“Am constantly monitoring the unfortunate situation in Uttarakhand. India stands with Uttarakhand and the nation prays for everyone’s safety there. Have been continuously speaking to senior authorities and getting updates on NDRF deployment, rescue work and relief operations,” the Prime Minister tweeted.
Home Minister Amit Shah also tweeted and said he too had spoken to Chief Minister Rawat.
“In relation to the natural disaster in Uttarakhand, Chief Minister TS Rawat and I have spoken to the Director-Generals of the ITBP and NDRF. All concerned officers and organisations are working on a war footing to ensure people are safe. NDRF teams have left for rescue ops and all possible help will be provided,” Mr Shah tweeted.