Massive search operation underway to trace missing pilgrims

Massive search operation underway to trace missing pilgrims

Srinagar: Massive operations are underway to trace 30-35 missing pilgrims at Amarnath cave which was hit by flash floods after a cloudburst on Friday evening leaving at least 15 Yatris dead and over 50 others injured.

Officials said the Yatra remains temporarily suspended.

The cloudburst occurred around 5.30 pm, and the flash flood washed away at least 25 tents very near to the Amarnath Cave.

Multiple agencies and rescuers armed with sniffer dogs and latest gadgets continued their search through the night to trace the missing people.

Director, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Atul Karwal said the search operation continued till 4.30 am and it was suspended for a while because of the rains.

“The search operation resumed at 6.30 am and about 30 to 35 people could be missing,” Karwal told The UNI.

He said they are moving some more resources from Bathinda Punjab including the canine squad so that they could trace the live victims.

“We are moving some more resources from Bathinda and they are being airlifted including our canine squad so that they could sniff out the live victims wherever they would be and some more equipment which is necessary for this situation and some additional manpower is also being sent,” Karwal said. “This all is being airlifted to Srinagar and then it will be ferried by helicopters to the location. So that the team could be strengthened with exactly what they need.”

Apart from NDRF, Army, police, CRPF, ITBP, SDRF other agencies are involved in the search operation.

The Army said it dispatched two ‘Through Wall Radars’ and 2 search and rescue dogs to the holy cave for rescue operation via helicopters from Sharifabad on Srinagar outskirts.

The 43-day Amarnath Yatra began on June 30 and more than 90000 pilgrims have paid obeisance at the holy Cave shrine.

UNI

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