To the next of the kin of those who died in the Uttarakhand flash floods

One year after devastating flash floods and landslides caused by a cloudburst claimed thousands of lives in Uttarakhand, the Uttar Pradesh government will begin distributing compensation to the next of the kin of the deceased from the State.

At least 5,000 people are believed to have died in one of the worst disasters in the country.

State Home Secretary Sanjay Prasad said here on Friday that 1,150 persons, including pilgrims who were on “Chardhaam yatra” to Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamnotri, were reported missing from Uttar Pradesh.

Mr. Prasad said 948 death certificates have been received from the Uttarakhand government and in the first phase cheques for Rs. 5.50 lakh each would be issued to the next of kin.

Of the total compensation amount, Rs. 2.50 lakh was from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund, Rs. 1.50 lakh from National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF) and Rs. 2 lakh from the state government as announced by Chief Minister, Akhilesh Yadav, Mr. Prasad added.

He said the details of the remaining 202 victims are being finalized. “The process of distributing the compensation would be completed within a month,” Mr. Prasad told reporters.

Tragedy struck the upper reaches of Uttarakhnad in Kedarnath on June 14 last year when heavy rains caused by a cloudburst triggered off flash floods and landslides. It rained for three consecutive days compounding the misery of the people caught unaware by nature’s fury.

The landslides left nearly 15,000 people stranded even as thousands were washed away due to flashed floods in the Mandakini.