1000 have died in the flash floods: Vijay Bahuguna

Dehradun (Uttarakhand), June 22 (ANI): Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna on Saturday confirmed that more than 1000 have died in the flash floods that recently hit the picturesque hill station.

"At least 1000 have died while thousands are still stranded. We welcome all the chief minister who are visiting the state," says Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna.

Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde earlier in the day said that close to 30,000 people have been rescued so far from different parts of Uttarakhand, while over 40,000 people are still stranded.

Shinde, who took stock of the rescue and relief operations in the flash flood hit areas of the hill state, said the evacuations will be completed in one or two days if the rescue operations continue in the same manner.

"Despite bad weather, the Army, NDRF and ITBP are landing and conducting rescue operations. Operations are underway on a war footing," he said, while emphasizing that the men in uniform are trying their best to evacuate those stranded.

The Home Minister said the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has been ordered to build access roads so that the stranded people can be reached.

Shinde said the identification of dead bodies has begun.

He, however, said that some of the bodies recovered were not identifiable.

" DNA tests of decomposed bodies will also be undertaken," said Shinde.

Shinde further informed that the government has appointed former Union Home Secretary V.K. Duggal as a nodal officer to oversee the relief and rescue operations.

He informed that 550 deaths had occurred till yesterday.

"Also, 1,751 houses, 147 bridges and 1,307 roads have got damaged," he added.

The Home Minister also played safe on the BJP's demand that Uttarakhand floods should be declared as a national calamity. (ANI)

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