Uttarakhand flash floods: Rescue officials try to re-establish contact with cut-off villages

AS OFFICERS descended towards the Rishi Ganga bank in Raini village, they prayed they do not sink in the heavy sludge left behind by the flash floods that washed away the hydro power plan at the site.

Tense moments ensued, before a team of five people was finally able to make its way across the river, which at present is just a trickle. The mission was simple – to establish contact with villages that have been cut off from the rest of the Chamoli district by land. These 13 villages lead to the country’s border with China. A zip line is being set up to send emergency supplies and to bring people to the other side of the river in case of medical emergencies.

At Raini village, the first of the 13 villages that could be accessed from the suspension bridge that was washed away on Sunday, residents stood on rooftops attempting to catch a glimpse of the rescue operations as helicopters flew past, trying to reach villages further away.

According to ITBP officials, the India-China border is around 130 km from Raini village.

SDRF officials said there has been good coordination despite no road connectivity as armed forces are present this time around.

“Usually the Army…

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