KOLKATA: Hundreds of visitors to the Darjeeling Hills and Sikkim stranded due to landslides at several spots due to heavy rainfall in north Bengal have started to reach their homes on Thursday evening as the landslides were being cleared on a war basis.
“We were stranded for over three hours. The traffic policemen were clearing the path for the vehicles to pass at a snail’s pace. However, we were not given water or food by any government or non-government organisations,” told Avisek Mishra, a tourist from south Bengal, to Express over the phone before boarding a bus for Kolkata from Siliguri.
Heavy rains had devastated a vital bridge link near Garidhura on the Kalijhora route near Siliguri on NH 10, standing hundreds of tourist vehicles that were returning to the plains after Durga Puja holidays in the Himalayas.
“We heard about the landslides on our way to Kalimpong. However, it was cleared slowly and we took the normal route to Siliguri and did not have to take any detour. More affected was the route from Siliguri to Darjeeling,” told Biswa Prasanna Mishra, an IIT Kharagpur student to Express over the phone, who had gone to North Sikkim to spend the Durga Puja holidays.
The heavy rains have also affected the plains of north Bengal causing overflowing of major rivers including Teesta and Jaldhaka.