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Part of a three-storey building washed away in flash floods in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand state on Sunday. Thirty one people were killed in the flash floods in Uttarakhand on Saturday and at least six missing from Gangori, which bore the brunt of nature’s fury. Heart-wrenching scenes were witnessed at Gangori, where the maximum number of deaths were reported, with relatives and villagers crying for help.
Efforts were on to move about 700 Char Dham pilgrims stranded at various places to safer spots on foot, as the roads were completely damaged and the hostile weather was not allowing airlifting of the people. The weather department has sounded an alert for heavy rains and flash floods for the next 24 hours.
Returning after an aerial survey with Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs and Agriculture Harish Rawat, Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna issued instructions to immediately restore power supply, drinking water and road connectivity in Uttarkashi and surrounding areas. Earlier, presiding over a high level disaster management and mitigation meeting, he ordered the officials to immediately restore the road link between Bhatwari and Uttarkashi, erect makeshift bridges wherever required, restore power and telephone lines. Schools and educational institutions in Uttarkashi and Chamoli have been closed for a week. Disaster Management Minister Yashpal Arya, who visited the area, could not proceed beyond Chinyalisaud as the roads were either completely damaged or washed away.
Meanwhile, Shanti Kunj Haridwar dispatched a 35-member team including an ambulance, doctors and specially trained volunteers to Uttarkashi on Sunday.
The team will create a base camp at Uttarkashi, conduct a quick survey with the help of local Gayatri Parivar members and distribute the material, Gauri Shankar Sharma, manager Shanti Kunj said.
The relief and rescue operations are being supervised by Shail Didi and Pranab Pandya, international heads of Gayatri Parivar. Fresh cloudbursts kill 8 more in Uttarakhand villages September 16, 2012 Uttarakhand cloudbursts toll rises to 35 September 15, 2012 Major rivers in U.P. Uttarakhand received 1440% more rain than it usually gets at this time of the year by 18 June, triggering flash floods and landslides that caused heavy casualties and widespread devastation. New Delhi: The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Thursday that rain in the Uttarakhand region is likely to increase after 25 June, posing the risk of fresh floods and threatening to impede the relief work that is under way. Already, at least 180 people are feared dead and environmentalists say that more rain, coupled with the poor infrastructure in the region, could make the situation even more precarious. A top IMD official said rain could become more widespread in the region after 25 June, and it wouldn’t be possible to rule out it would be as intense as the downpour over the past week. The pace at which the June-September monsoon has covered the country this year is the fastest in more than 50 years with all of India getting rain by 15 June. Meteorologists attribute the early spread primarily to strong westerlies combining with a strong pattern of winds in the Bay of Bengal pulling monsoon clouds over south and central India into the north. Westerlies are strong winds caused by pressure variance between the Arctic region and the poles and usually bring heavy rain to Europe as well as Central and South Asia.
Because of this, Uttarakhand received 1440% more rain than it usually gets at this time of the year by 18 June.
Meteorologists said the westerlies have blown over and will not bring much rain to north India, at least until 25 June. IMD last month said India would get 98% of its historical average rain over the monsoon months of June to September. Flash floods, following cloudbursts, wash away a bridge in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand on Saturday.

After weeks of deficient monsoon in the northwestern region, the three Himalayan States of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, as well as Uttar Pradesh, on Saturday faced cloudbursts, landslips and floods, causing at least 31 deaths. Authorities issued a flood alert as the level in the Chenab, Tawi, Ujh and Basantar rivers approached the danger mark in Jammu. In Himachal Pradesh, the police evacuated people along the river as flash floods hit Solang Valley. In the worst-hit Uttarakhand, 28 persons including two children and three firefighters were killed and others went missing after being washed away by flash floods in Uttarkashi and Chamoli districts.
The Uttarakhand government suspended the Char Dham Yatra and initiated steps for the return of the over 1,500 stranded pilgrims. The Bhagirathi soared above the danger level in Uttarkashi and the Ganga was just short of the danger mark at Haridwar. In Uttarkashi, bodies of seven labourers were recovered, while at least 20 others went missing after a flash flood washed away part of the power house of Assi Ganga power project Phase I.
The Gangori fire station was destroyed and a fire tender and some private vehicles were washed away.
The Gangotri highway was washed away to a length of several kilometres, as was the Gangori hanging bridge.
In Chamoli, two children were killed and two injured when their house collapsed in Karnaprayag.
Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna said compensation issues would be worked out after the rescue and relief works were over. Simple commonsense question; anywhere on earth, people stop travel if weather is bad and government closes roads.
Heavy and non-stop rainfall has caused irreversible damage in the state of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. SEEDS is responding to the shelter needs of affected people in Chamoli and the first batch of tents is being dispatched.
SEEDS, founded in 1994, is a humanitarian organisation that has been active in all major relief and rehabilitation initiatives since the 2001 Gujarat Earthquake. SEEDS is the first Indian Agency to be certified by the “Humanitarian Accountability Partnership” – the global commitment to meeting the highest standards of accountability and quality management in humanitarian response. Washed away: Damaged buildings near the Kedarnath shrine following heavy rains and flood in Uttarakhand. A view of the washed off buildings in Kedarnath Dham in Uttarakhand following incessant rains and floods. The death toll in flash floods and landslides in Uttarakhand crossed 550 as rescuers intensified efforts today to evacuate 50,000 people still stranded in different inaccessible parts of the hill state.
Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna, who gave the updated death toll, said tonight that 556 bodies were recovered from under the debris. It was not immediately known if the death toll included 40 bodies found floating along the Ganges river near Haridwar. Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde earlier said the death toll touched 207 but at the same time said it could go up. Nearly 34,000 stranded people were evacuated in operations on a war footing launched by multiple agencies including the Army, IAF and ITBP since the heavy monsoon rains pounded the state a week ago.
Rescuers were focussing on rain—ravaged Kedarnath area where 250 people are stranded before shifting focus to Badrinath where 9,000 people are stuck, officials said.

ITBP and police personnel on Sunday searched debris of flattened homes and dug rubbles to look for more bodies. 20 crore from the disaster mitigation fund for immediate relief work and urged civil society organisations to rush help to the victims. The team is carrying over 50 quintals of food grains, medicines, clothes, utensils kit, tea, sugar, clothes, kerosene, a portable generator and water. However the first thing that strikes me on seeing these photos is why are these three-storey concrete structures built so close to the banks of the river? This triggered flash floods and landslides that caused heavy casualties and widespread devastation. Border Roads Organisation personnel, with the help of local authorities, were providing relief to the affected people.
The efforts were, however, hampered by rain, landslips and slippery mountain tracks, the State Disaster Mitigation and Management Centre said.
The administration evacuated 200 families from the area and lodged them in government buildings. Seems the men in charge have a blueprint for a holocaust waiting to happen in near future to which we as a human race is being steadily pushed to ! The worst flood affected districts are Uttarkashi, Chamoli, Rudraprayag, Pithorgarh in Uttarakhand and Kinnaur in Himachal Pradesh. Local families have lost everything they owned (houses, livestock, assets) .Our team and partner organizations are assessing the situations and supporting basic needs on the ground.
Over the years, our team has reached out to families affected by earthquakes, floods and cyclones; restored schools and hospitals. Thousands of Char Dham pilgrims were stranded enroute to Gangotri and Yamunotri, as incessant showers across Uttarakhand caused landslips. But the toll may go up as debris in many areas is yet to be cleared”, he told reporters in Delhi.
These seem to be violating any common sense of respecting the natural flow and space of the river. A dozen bridges were washed away and debris from landslips blocked most roads including national highways leading to Gangotri, Yamunotri, Badrinath, Kedarnath and Hemkunt Sahib.
Roads and essential infrastructure (bridges and health centres) have suffered extensive damage. The ground realities are expected to get worse in the coming days with lack of clean water, medical aid, shelter and food shortages.
SEEDS continue to advocate for and work with communities across Asia to build a safer and sustainable world. Rain continues in JammuHundreds of people were trapped in various places in Jammu as heavy rains continued on Sunday, triggering landslides and posing a threat to many villages with rivers flowing close to the danger mark. ITBP jawans were trying to provide relief to the residents of the worst-hit Mathali village. I'm sure there would have been far fewer casualties if these concrete structures that are wrong in every way, would not have been built.

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