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Sunday, 11 April 2021 7.33 AM IST

Uttarakhand disaster: 32 confirmed dead, 600 rescue workers deployed to find hundreds missing

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DEHRADUN: The sudden flood in the Alaknanda river system in Uttarakhand's Chamoli district that is thought to have been triggered by an avalanche or glacier burst.

The flash floods three days ago was due to hanging glacier collapse, as per an initial study by scientists at the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology. The study also suggests that rock mass weakened over a period of time due to freezing and thawing of snow that possibly led to the creation of a "weak zone", resulting in the formation of a temporary dam that breached, causing the deadly floods. The glaciers feed the Rishiganga river, which meets the Dhualiganga river.

"The event happened in a hanging glacier, adjacent to Raunthi glacier, which originates from Raunthi/Mrigudhani peak (6,063 metres above sea level)," Kalachand Sain, director of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, said.

So far, 32 people have been confirmed dead with six more bodies being recovered, officials said Tuesday. About 30 workers are trapped inside a tunnel at a power project site and 174 people are missing.

The rescue operation involves around 600 rescue personnel.

32 bodies recovered, 206 persons (including 25-35 people stuck inside Tapovan tunnel) missing in Uttarakhand glacier burst, according to state government.

Rescue workers racing against time to rescue over 34 workers believed to be stuck in the 1.6km-long-tunnel filled with debris.

The rescue operation at the 2.5 km long Tapovan tunnel in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand continued on Tuesday night; teams worked to remove slush and debris in the tunnel. Around 30 people are feared trapped in the tunnel, reported ANI.

People, who know someone who is missing, can contact DIG Law & Order on +91 7500016666, they'll be sent photos of 24 bodies that are yet to be identified, on WhatsApp: Uttarakhand Police.

"Rani and Lata, the marginalised villagers affected by the Chamoli disaster, went and reviewed the situation there. Visited the villagers and asked them their about well-being. The affectionate behaviour of the villagers touched the mind," CM Trivendra Rawat said.

The 4 workers came from Chikad and Sagrampur villages near Chief Minister Hemant Soren's native village Nemra. There is no news of them yet, he said. Local villager Rupa Devi has, however, claimed that six persons from the area are missing since the disaster.

The flash floods in Uttarakhand two days ago could be attributed to the collapse of a hanging glacier, initial observations by scientists at the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology suggests. A body of ice that breaks off abruptly at the edge of a precipice or steep slope is referred to as a hanging glacier. Kalachand Sain, director of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, said, "The event happened in a hanging glacier, adjacent to Raunthi glacier, which originates from Raunthi/Mrigudhani peak (6,063 metres above sea level)."

ITBP personnel provided ration items to Pang village that has been cut off due to flash flood, in Uttarakhand today.

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TAGS: UTTARAKHAND, GLOF, FLASH FLOODS, SUDDEN FLOOD, LALAKNANDA RIVER, CHAMOLI DISTRICT, 32 DEAD, 600
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