Uttarakhand bridge collapse: SDRF rescues 38 stranded pilgrims, including 27 Kanwar yatris

The SDRF team has cautioned that the incessant downpour has caused the rivers and streams to swell, posing a threat to the low-lying areas and making it challenging for the rescue teams to access the affected regions.
Rescue operations after the bridge collapsed near Chidwasa
Rescue operations after the bridge collapsed near Chidwasa (Photo | Special arrangement)

DEHRADUN: A rescue operation is underway in Uttarkashi district after a bridge collapse near Chidwasa on the Gomukh pedestrian path left dozens of pilgrims stranded.

The bridge gave way on Thursday night, trapping around 40 pilgrims on the opposite side of the river, according to eyewitnesses.

The SDRF team was informed by the Gangotri police station and promptly reached the scene after covering a distance of approximately eight kilometres on foot.

Speaking to The New Indian Express, State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) Commandant Manikant Mishra told that a rescue team was immediately dispatched to the scene after receiving reports of a bridge collapse near Chidwasa on Thursday night.

On Friday morning, the rescue team successfully evacuated 38 stranded pilgrims, including 27 Kanwar yatris, five female employees of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, and eight local residents, after a six-hour continuous rescue operation. Meanwhile, the two individuals who were swept away by the river currents were part of the Kawad yatris group.

The rescued individuals were safely brought to Uttarkashi, said Commandant Mishra, who praised the team's efforts in battling the fierce water currents to establish a temporary ropes-based system to rescue the stranded pilgrims.

The SDRF team has cautioned that the incessant downpour has caused the rivers and streams to swell, posing a threat to the low-lying areas and making it challenging for the rescue teams to access the affected regions. The team is working tirelessly to evacuate the stranded pilgrims and locals, but the rising water levels have added an extra layer of complexity to the rescue operations.

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