Bad weather hampers debris removal at Kedarnath

Bad weather hampers debris removal at Kedarnath

Bad weather hampers debris removal at Kedarnath

Bad weather today stalled debris clearance operations by a 61-member team at Kedarnath and construction of a pedestrian route from Rambada to the Himalayan shrine even as attempts were on to transport relief to calamity-hit areas in Rudraprayag, Chamoli and Uttarkashi.

However, the team despatched to Kedarnath has been able to build a temporary bridge over a canal between the helipad and the shrine.

"Debris removal at Kedarnath is stalled due to bad weather.Work on construction of a pedestrian route from Rambada to Kedarnath has also been stopped," Rudraprayag Superintendent of police V
J Singh said.

"Whenever the weather clears up amid intermittent rains in Kedar valley, relief material is despatched to the affected villages," he said.

An official statement here said 983 quintals of foodgrains besides 288 LPG cylinders have been made available to affected people in the villages of Rudraprayag district.

However, the damaged network of roads which continue to be blocked by debris brought over by rains is hampering relief operations.

Low visibility conditions are affecting air relief operations whereas damaged roads are making transportation of relief to affected villages by road, officials here said.

The Goepshwar-Chopta road in Rudraparayg is blocked at several places while Rishikesh-Kedarnath NH is open only till Agastyamuni. Rishikesh Badrinath NH in Chamoli district is blocked by debris near Kameda, Patalganga and Pagalnala.

But despite the vagaries of nature, 35 quintals of foodgrains and 230 litres of kerosene and diesel have been sent to the flood hit villagers in the district, they said.

6120 quintals of foodgranisn have also been despatched to 146 villages of Uttarkashi district.
Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna said opinion of experts will be taken to address the issues of rehabilitation and reconstruction of affected areas.

A meeting of geologists and environmentalists has been convened in this regard on July 21 in Dehradun where a roadmap for redevelopment of rain ravaged areas will be drawn using environment-friendly methods, he told reporters yesterday.

Leader of Opposition in State Assembly Ajay Bhatt, who visited the flood hit areas of Pithoragarh close to Nepal border, demanded constitution of a monitoring committee by the state government consisting of opposition leaders and locals to ensure that relief reaches people affected by the tragedy.

A committee with government representatives, opposition leaders and prominent locals on the panel should be constituted to ensure even distribution of relief material among affected people, Bhatt told reporters in Pithoragarh.

He also demanded that the BRO be given adequate funds and necessary equipment needed to repair the vast network of damaged roads in the state.

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