GNAGTOK: Altogether 2,413 stranded tourists were on Saturday rescued from North Sikkim after they were stuck in Lachen and Lachung areas following a massive landslide triggered by heavy rain, officials said.
The landslide at Pegong-Chungthang caused a road blockade, disrupting vehicular traffic in the region, they said.
In a day-long rescue operation launched jointly by officials of Chungthang Sub-Division, the General Reserve Engineer Force and members of the local panchayat, 2,413 individuals, who were stranded in the area, were successfully rescued.
The landslide had occurred in the early hours of Friday, leaving the residents of Pegong-Chungthang areas and tourists stranded and they were in desperate need of assistance, an official said.
All the stranded tourists were taken to the Sikkim capital Gangtok in vehicles arranged by the state government, another official said.
The swift action taken by the authorities under the supervision of Roads & Bridges Minister Samdup Lepcha ended later in the day, following the rescue of all the tourists, he said.
The authorities arranged for medical teams to provide immediate attention to the stranded tourists, ensuring their well-being throughout the evacuation process.
In addition to the rescue operation, the GREF committed to the local people that a new bridge would be constructed within a short period, which would be the lifeline to the residents of Pegong-Chungthang areas and would prevent such incidents of isolation during times of emergency.