A shopkeeper in Hassan, D.S. Ramesh, has been praying for the safe return of his family members who are stranded at Kedarnath since last Saturday, following floods in Uttarkhand. His daughter, Shwetha, son-in-law Raghavendra, both working for a software firm in Mysore, and seven relatives of his family were on a 21-day pilgrimage. Mr. Ramesh told The Hindu that his family members left for pilgrimage on June 1 as part of a package tour conducted by a travel company. They reached Kedarnath on Saturday June 15. “As the place received heavy rain on Saturday, the travel company’s staff shifted them from a lodge in Kedarnath to a nearby locality,” he said.

He said that all his relatives had cellphones but they could not be contacted. “Either due to lack of facility to charge their mobile phones or network problem, I have not been able to speak to them. Whenever I get their lines, they speak only for a few seconds. They are running out of food packets,” he said.

Mr. Ramesh has appealed to the State government to make arrangements to bring all pilgrims from the State back.

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