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Army comes to the rescue of stranded pilgrims

Vinay Kumar
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CRUCIAL ROLE:An Armyman shifts a stranded pilgrim to a safer area in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand on Tuesday.— PHOTO: AP
CRUCIAL ROLE:An Armyman shifts a stranded pilgrim to a safer area in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand on Tuesday.— PHOTO: AP

The Army is playing the lead role in disaster management efforts in large parts of north India as there is a breakdown of communications due to floods.

Over 5,000 personnel have been deployed in Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana, to help those affected by the rains, Army officials said here on Tuesday.

Columns have been deployed to evacuate stranded pilgrims, clear roads, and provide relief. A column on the Hemkund Sahib route has evacuated more than 4,000 pilgrims across the broken bridge at Govindghat in Uttarakhand and constructed a foot track for their safe passage. About 1,800 pilgrims have been moved from Govindghat to Joshimath.

Medical facilities, refreshments and lodging facilities have been extended to over 1,300 people at Joshimath. Over 200 sets of blankets, sleeping bags, combat jackets and balaclavas have been provided to the evacuated pilgrims. Another column has been clearing a major landslide near Patal Ganga in Joshimath to restore connectivity.

One column has also been deployed for relief and rescue work in Badasu, which has virtually been cut off as the road from Rudraprayag to Badasu has been blocked at Silchatti and Kund Chatti, and the bridge at Rudraprayag is flooded.

Another unit constructed a log bridge at Harsil and evacuated 600 pilgrims. It also opened a medical relief camp for stranded civilians and is providing food, water and shelter. Further, a foot track has been constructed and help has been provided for evacuation of 100 pilgrims stranded on the Harsil-Gangotri axis.

Army personnel have been deployed at Raigarhi village on the Moradabad-Haridwar road. They are also assisting civilians stranded between Badrinath and Mana.

In Yamuna Nagar, Haryana, two columns have rescued 103 people, including 37 children from several villages. Civilians have been moved from affected areas around Saharanpur city.


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