25 killed as heavy rains lash Uttarakhand

A view of an overflowing Rispana River following heavy rains in Dehradun. (PTI file photo)

Over 25 people were killed in incidents of cloud bursts, landslides and house collapse in Uttarkashi district in the hill state of Uttarakhand, about 600 kilometres from here.

According to the reports ten bodies have so far been recovered by the rescue teams while 15 persons were reported to be missing and presumed dead.

Teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), police and health department have reached the affected villages in the district and joined the relief and rescue operations there.

Indian Air Force (IAF) choppers were also pressed into service to transport the injured to the hospitals in the capital Dehradun and other places.

Sources said that Arakot in Uttarkashi was the worst affected by the cloud burst on Sunday. Dozens of houses were swept away in the rains. Heavy rains also wreaked havoc at Makudi, Molda, Tikochi and Sanel also.

The hill state was being lashed by heavy rains for the past few days affecting normal lives and also the 'char dham yatra' (pilgrimage to Gangotri, Yamunotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines). The pilgrimage to the Hemkunt Sahib was also stopped, sources said.

At several places, the roads were washed away or blocked by the boulders falling from the hills following landslides. Efforts were on to clear the roads, sources said.

The water level of Ganga has been increasing following heavy rains triggering a flood alert in Hardwar and Rishikesh towns in the state.

The Met Office has predicted more rains in the state in the next 48-hours.

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