Jharkhand sending teams to Chamoli to help those stranded
The Jharkhand government has decided to send teams of officials to flood-ravaged Chamoli district of Uttarakhand to facilitate the safe return of all those who are stranded there, officials said on Friday.
Family representatives of all those who are currently missing will also accompany the labour department teams for on-spot identification of the bodies, officials added.
State labour commissioner A. Muthukumar told local reporters that a family member or representative of those who are missing would also accompany the labour department teams.
“Labour superintendents of all those districts from where we received information about missing persons will start going to the affected site along with the family members of workers. District administrations are making arrangements in this regard and coordinating with authorities in Uttarakhand,” said on Friday.
As per the figures issued by the state control room, 14 workers from Jharkhand are missing since Sunday’s glacier break that triggered an avalanche and flash floods, washing away a dam and hydro power plant that was being constructed by the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) in Tapovan.
All 14 missing were working at the NTPC project site. Of the 14, nine are from Lohardaga, four from Ramgarh and one from Bokaro. As many as 29 are stranded at different places, while some are on the way back. Officials fear that those missing may be dead, but there has been no official confirmation on them.
“Even family members are of the view that those missing aren’t alive anymore as most of those who went traceless were working inside the tunnel which got flooded. There were reports from on-spot rescue teams that some may have got swept 150 metre inside the tunnel, from where it is virtually impossible to return,” remarked an official.
“Talks are on for DNA sampling of family members of those missing. This apart, the labour department team has been empowered to take a call on the mode of transport to ring back those who are stranded. The government is also ready to airlift anyone if required,” added the official.
Family members of missing persons from Ramgarh district reached Tapovan on Friday. They are understood to have poled in funds for the journey. But they couldn’t be contacted as their phones remained out of range.