Himachal CM evacuated from Kinnaur after 60 hours, 1700 still stranded

Kinnaur District (Himachal Pradesh), June 18 (ANI): Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, who had been stranded in the state's tribal-dominant Kinnaur District for nearly 60 hours due to landslides triggered by incessant rains, was evacuated on Tuesday morning by a state government-owned helicopter.

The evacuation took place even as 1700 people continue to remain stranded at various places in the state.

Local reports informed that rains have abated and the weather is clear.

About a dozen persons, including some old and ailing persons were brought to Rampur in the state helicopter.

Bharat Khera, secretary (General Administration) coordinating the rescue operations, said the state chopper was pressed into service and people stranded at Pooh in the border area and other places are being evacuated.

"We are trying to evacuate the sick and old persons and tourists on priority," he said.

About 1700 people, including a large number of tourists, were stranded at various places in Kinnaur District for the past three days and efforts were on to rescue them.

The Hindustan-Tibet National Highway, which has been breached and blocked beyond Tapri at several points due to massive landslides triggered by incessant rains, was unlikely to be opened anytime soon.

The Public Works Department and the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) are working overtime to clear the debris of the road.

Kinnaur District received a record 204 mm of rain on Monday. (ANI)


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