At least 21 killed in Himachal Pradesh rain havoc

Four killed in Uttarakhand; downpour triggers flash floods, landslips in hill States

Updated - August 20, 2022 11:43 pm IST

Published - August 20, 2022 09:38 am IST - Chandigarh

Collapsed portion of railway bridge across the Chakki river after flash floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains in Dharamshala on August 20, 2022.

Collapsed portion of railway bridge across the Chakki river after flash floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains in Dharamshala on August 20, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

At least 25 people were killed as torrential rain triggered flash floods and landslips in the hill States of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, officials said on Saturday. Several arterial roads were blocked by debris, while gushing currents washed away bridges and vehicles.

Himachal Pradesh bore the maximum brunt as 21 people were killed and 12 sustained injuries in 34 incidents of landslip, flash flood and cloud burst in the State. At least six people are missing in rain-related incidents, the government said in a statement.

A truck damaged by boulders after landslide triggered by heavy monsoon rains, near Mandi on August 20, 2022.

A truck damaged by boulders after landslide triggered by heavy monsoon rains, near Mandi on August 20, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

Mandi, Kangra and Chamba were the worst-affected districts in the State. As many as 742 roads, including the Manali-Chandigarh National Highway at Mandi and the Shimla-Chandigarh Highway at Shoghi, were blocked for traffic. Nearly 172 water supply schemes were also disrupted by the unprecedented rain.

Four people were killed in Uttarakhand, while 12 are missing after a series of cloud bursts hit different parts of the State.

Swollen Beas river following heavy monsoon rain, in Kullu district on August 20, 2022.

Swollen Beas river following heavy monsoon rain, in Kullu district on August 20, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

“So far, four people have died. 13 people have been injured and 12 people are missing. Five gaushalas (cow-sheds) have been damaged and 78 animals have been lost,” Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami said.

Raipur, where a cloudburst occurred around 2.15 am in Sarkhet village, the Thano areas of Dehradun and parts of Pauri, Tehri and Almora districts suffered the most damage.

The government machinery has been deployed so that there is no disruption in providing basic amenities in the affected areas of Himachal Pradesh.

Chief Secretary R.D. Dhiman on Saturday issued directions to all the districts to close the educational institutions in the areas affected by landslips and flash floods and to open camps in schools and communities centres to provide temporary shelter to the affected people.

The Himachal Pradesh Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation has advised tourists to travel safely. Amit Kashyap, Director (Tourism), said that tourists who are already in the State were advised not to go near rivers and hill sides. They must also collect prior information about the condition of the roads before travelling.

In Uttarkhand, the Chief Minister said that administration and SDRF teams had been deployed for relief and rescue operations in the disaster-affected areas. “The State government is also in touch with the Army. Helicopters have also been put on alert,” he said.

Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Dhanolti, Lakshmi Raj Chauhan, said the Rishikesh-Badrinath highway was blocked at Totaghati and the Rishikesh-Gangotri highway at Nagni was blocked at several points due to debris.

Meanwhile, the yatra to the famous Mata Vaishno Devi shrine atop Trikuta hills in Reasi district of Jammu and Kashmir resumed on Saturday morning after remaining temporarily suspended overnight following heavy rain.

(With PTI inputs)

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