Amarnath Cloudburst: 35 missing pilgrims out of 37 from Andhra Pradesh traced

Officials say efforts on to trace 2 missing persons; LG visits Chandanwari to review arrangements; Major part of rescue ops completed at holy cave, says Air Commodore IAF

Srinagar: Among 37 pilgrims from Andhra Pradesh, who were missing after cloudburst hit lower Amarnath cave shrine on Friday, 35 have been traced and were safely on way to their respective destinations, officials said here on Monday.

An official told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) 35 pilgrims have been traced and have safely reached to Andhra, while two are still missing.

He said that two pilgrims from Andra Pradesh namely Gunishetty Sudha and Kotha Parvathi belonging to Rajahmundry area of Andhra Pradesh are still missing, while efforts are on to trace them.

Meanwhile, LG Manoj Sinha on Monday visited Chandanwari to review arrangements for the ongoing yatra session.

During his visit to Chandanwari, he reviewed arrangements, medical facilities and preparations in view of any exigency.

He also visited DRDO hospital and inspected the facilities besides, he interacted with doctors, safaiwalas and encouraged them to keep doing the good work.

Meanwhile, Air Commodore of Indian Air Force, Pankaj Mittal while giving details about the rescue operations during a press briefing said that major part of rescue operation has been completed at the holy cave.

He said that during the rescue mission, conducted by IAF, 04 MI-17, 04 Cheetah and other ALH helicopters were pressed into the service.

He said that IAF carried out total 112 missions so far during the rescue operation at Holy Amarnath Cave and 130 people including 123 injured and 7 dead bodies were carried from Holy cave and Panjtarni area and Baltal.

He said that 29 tons of load which includes equipment, NDRF rescue teams, engineers, dog squad etc were flown to Holy Cave area during this operation.

“The holy Amarnath valley being very narrow with the limited aerospace was tough for the massive scale rescue mission but IAF managed all the things and conducted the rescue mission successfully,” said that, adding that it was a joint operation carried out by various agencies including army, police, paramilitary forces, NDRF and civil administration.

Mittal further said that the initial operation was very challenging as weather was a major hurdle during the operation because of which they couldn’t start operations on the 8th evening when the tragedy took place.

He added that the operation was started on 9th morning and despite weather challenges they managed to operate and conduct rescue operation successfully—(KNO)

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