Uttarakhand: 92 of 96 from Karnataka safe


Of the remaining four persons, three are stranded in Badrinath and one is an SSB jawan

At least 96 people from Karnataka were stranded in rain-battered Uttarakhand, of which 92 have reported to be safe, Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC) said on Wednesday.

Of the remaining four, three are stranded in Badrinath and are not reachable due to connectivity issues, while one is an SSB jawan. “Regarding the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) jawan, SSB control room has been intimated,” the KSNDMC said.

On Tuesday, the Karnataka Government established a helpdesk to assist stranded people — passengers, pilgrims, tourists, and visitors from Karnataka — at various places in Uttarakhand. Minister for Revenue R. Ashok had said that those stranded or relatives of the stranded can contact the helpdesk and give information, which will be flashed to the Uttarakhand authorities for immediate action and quick response.

Ten calls

A senior official told The Hindu that the centre had received 10 calls since Tuesday. “Through these, we heard from them that they are safe. For example, there was one group of 50 pilgrims. Our team is trying to reach out to the state nodal team of Uttarakhand to ascertain these details. So out of 96, 92 reported back as safe. Many are already making the journey back,” said the official.

The calls were received from Bengaluru, Mysuru, Vijayapura, Dharwad, and Udupi, the official said, adding that road connectivity and communications had been hit in Uttarakhand.

Incessant downpour in the state has wreaked havoc, leading to deaths and destruction. Uttarakhand attracts tourists, pilgrims and adventure enthusiasts in large numbers with popular destinations such as Nainital, Rishikesh, and Haridwar.

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Ashwath Narayan, whose wife was part of the group of 50 people on the chaar dhaam yatra through a travel agency, said the group was safe.

“They left on October 18 morning. They are safe and the travel agency is making arrangements for their return. They are looking at the weather conditions and flight availability to bring them back,” he added.

Posted in Uttarakhand

There are others from the state who are settled in or posted in Uttarakhand. Anil Kumar from Vijayapura, whose sister Anitha S. Papanavar is a doctor at a military hospital, said she was to come home, but got stranded due to a landslip.

“I managed to reach her and she said she is safe. However, I have not received any photos or managed to make any video calls to her. If I try 20 times, i am able to connect with her once. But she is safe and staying with department colleagues at a village,” he said.

Further communication from the Revenue Department said: “Though the rainfall intensity has reduced, there has been extensive damage to road network because of multiple landslides due to which people are stranded. The road repairs are taken up on priority by agencies concerned. Weather is likely to clear in the next two to three days.”

The Karnataka State Emergency Operation Centre (KSEOC) can be reached at 080 – 1070 (toll free) and 080 – 2234 0676. These numbers are active to receive any distress call and will function 24×7, says an official press release.



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Sagar Biswas

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