NEW DELHI: Speaking for the first time since the flood tragedy in Uttarakhand, Home Minister Amit Shah has said the centre is extending “all possible assistance” to the state government for relief and rescue work. “A total of 197 people are reported missing which includes 139 of an under-construction project of NTPC, 46 of the functional Rishiganga Project and 12 villagers,” Shah said in the Parliament on Tuesday.
Shah said the 13.2 MW Rishiganga hydroelectric project was washed away and the under-construction 520 MW NTPC hydroelectric power project at Tapovan on Dhauliganga river was damaged. “It is observed from satellite data (Planet Lab) of 7th February in the catchment of Rishiganga river at the terminus of the glacier at an altitude of 5600m a landslide triggered a snow avalanche covering approximately 14 sq kms and caused a flash flood in the downstream of Rishiganga river,” said the minister’s statement.
“Rescue operation to evacuate these people (who are trapped) is going on a war footing and all out efforts are made for searching missing persons,” he said. ITBP has set up a control room in Joshimath and 450 personnel of the force with necessary equipment, eight teams of Indian Army, including one Engineer Task Force (ETF), are carrying out the rescue and relief operations.