Missing 153 persons belong to Hyderabad, 10 hail from Vizag

The government was a little relieved as 140 out of 424 Char Dham yatra pilgrims from the State who remained untraced so far, contacted the helplines functioning at the district Collectorates, AP Bhavan or camps in Dehradun.

The information received up to Wednesday evening by the authorities revealed that 153 out of the missing pilgrims were from Hyderabad, 68 from Ranga Reddy district, Karimnagar (19), Visakhapatnam (10), Kadapa, Chittoor (10 each), Guntur 6, Anantapur, Warangal (three each) and Nizamabad two.

Disaster Management Commissioner T. Radha told The Hindu from Dehradun, that the administrative machinery was making efforts to contact the families of the missing persons.

Their well-being would be known only on receipt of information from their families or the revenue officials.

Officials in the State control room at the Secretariat as also in Dehradun headed by Mr. Radha heaved a sigh of relief as more than 120 stranded pilgrims could be sent to Hyderabad from Dehradun by a special flight on Wednesday evening.

Express happiness

They expressed happiness that the Army and Uttarakhand officials had permitted the AP government to deploy another chopper to bring the stranded people in Badrinath and nearby areas to Dehradun.

The government officially announced that there were 11 deaths, with Visakhapatnam district accounting for 6, Kurnool, Guntur two each and Anantapur one. Mr. Radha did not rule out the possibility of the toll going up.

Review progress

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy reviewed the progress of the airlifting operations with Ministers D. Sridhar Babu and N. Uttam Kumar Reddy and Union Minister Balram Naik at the AP Bhavan in New Delhi.

The Chief Minister called on Defence Minister A.K. Antony and thanked him for the excellent rescue operations by the Army and Air Force personnel.