Rain fury in Uttarakhand claims 42 more lives, toll reaches 47; PM Modi condoles deaths

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Updated: October 20, 2021 8:07 AM

Twenty-eight people were killed in Nainital district, six each in Almora and Champawat, and one each in Pithoragarh and Udham Singh Nagar districts.

Twenty-eight people were killed in Nainital district, six each in Almora and Champawat, and one each in Pithoragarh and Udham Singh Nagar districts.

Incessant rain has wreaked havoc in Uttarakhand where 42 people have been killed since Tuesday with many people still trapped under the rubble after landslides. The toll due to rain-related incidents in the state has reached 47.

Twenty-eight people were killed in Nainital district, six each in Almora and Champawat, and one each in Pithoragarh and Udham Singh Nagar districts. The connectivity to Nainital was restored in the evening after hours of struggle amid inclement weather.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was anguished by the loss of lives due to heavy rainfall in parts of Uttarakhand. “May the injured recover soon. Rescue operations are underway to help those affected. I pray for everyone’s safety and well-being,” he tweeted.

Chief Minister Dhami undertook an aerial survey of the rain-hit areas and later interacted with the affected people on ground zero to make an assessment of the damages caused. He announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh each to the next of kin of those killed in rain-related incidents across the state over the last two days.

Interacting with the disaster-affected people in Rudraprayag, Nainital and Udham Singh Nagar districts, Dhami said people need to have patience in this hour of crisis. All necessary arrangements are being made by the state government, he said, adding that there was no need to panic. The crisis can be overcome with the cooperation of all, he said.

Disaster Management Minister Dhan Singh Rawat, DGP Ashok Kumar, Rudrapur MLA Rajkumar Thukral and senior officials were with the chief minister when he met the affected people in Rudrapur and Kichcha in Udham Singh Nagar district.

DIG Bharne said despite bad weather and continuing showers, the blocked roads in Nainital were cleared of rubble and connectivity to the tourist spot was restored. Stranded tourists have also begun to leave for their respective destinations through Kaladhungi and Haldwani, he said.

Director General of Police Ashok Kumar, who accompanied the chief minister on a visit to the rain-hit areas of Kumaon region, said roads, bridges and railway tracks have been damaged in Kathgodam and Lalkuan in Nainital and Rudrapur in Udham Singh Nagar district.

Around 100 people stranded at the Lemon Tree resort on the Ramnagar-Ranikhet route after water from a swollen Kosi river entered the resort were later evacuated to safety. Electricity, telecom and internet connectivity in Nainital remained badly hit throughout the day.

Three Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters have arrived in the state and are assisting in relief and rescue operations. Two of them have been deployed in Nainital district, which has suffered extensive damage due to cloudbursts and landslides, Dhami said.

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