Flood of woes

Thousands missing in Kedarnath
Nearly thousands of people are missing following the devastating floods in Uttarakhand, officials said yesterday, adding that the death toll may run into frightening figures.

Shopkeepers make use of a boat as they wade through the rising waters of the Yamuna River at the Tibetan market in New Delhi yesterday. Pics/AFP

“We are not sure of the number of people who have died in the rains but for sure the numbers are much higher as more than 15,000 people are reported missing,” a senior official said.

A man tries to salvage a pumpkin from the waters of the Yamuna river in New Delhi

Uttarakhand Director General of Police Satyavrat conceded that two policemen and three ITBP troopers had perished and that an entire police outpost at Ram Bada had gone missing.

Yamuna reaches 35-year high
The water level in the Yamuna breached the 207-metre mark the highest in 35 years. The water level in the river reached 207.12 metres on Wednesday evening after the Haryana government released water from the Hathnikund barrage.

Pilgrims rescued from a flood hit area by a helicopter hug their family members after arriving in Dehradun yesterday

As the swelled up Yamuna breached its banks, the city’s 145-year-old railway bridge had to be shut down, and 2,000 families living along the river banks evacuated to safer places. According to a Delhi government official, a man was washed away by the strong currents of the Yamuna while he was taking a bath near Majnu Ka Tilla in north Delhi.

Trapped pilgrims slam government
A number of trapped pilgrims and tourists in flood-affected areas of Uttarakhand have accused the local government of doing nothing to help them and demanded that Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna resign. “Yatris (travellers) from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan and Delhi are stuck and we are feeling miserable and helpless... the government is not interested in saving us,” said Arora, a resident of Delhi. Another pilgrim added, “The state government is sleeping and it seems there is no administration in the state. The only thing it is doing is giving false assurances and hiding the truth,” he added.

350 families moved from Haryana villages
Authorities in Haryana’s Palwal district shifted nearly 350 families from two villages after the water level in the Yamuna river crossed the danger level. Additional Chief Secretary and Financial Commissioner, Revenue, Krishna Mohan said that the residents of Mewlipur and Indiranagar villages were shifted as the water entered these areas. The families have been shifted to another village. 

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