Himachal Pradesh landslide: Death toll increases to 34, rescue operations continue

Himachal landslide

Himachal landslide

The landslide which is suspected to be caused by a cloudburst also swept away houses and many other vehicles including a auto and a jeep besides around 250 meters stretch of Pathankot-Mandi national highway.

Rescue operations were halted Sunday night with authorities anxious about more mudslides on the Mandi-Pathankot highway, where the tradegy occured on the intervening night between Saturday and Sunday.

"Forty-six bodies have been recovered, and of these 23 have been identified", an official said.

Only 12 bodies have been recovered so far after daylong rescue and joint search operation carried out by the administration, police, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), army and locals. As per a Times of India report, one of the bus was on its way to Katra in Jammu from Manali, while the other was on its way to Chamba from Manali. It swept away the buses 800 metres down into a gorge and buried one of the buses completely. Three of the eight persons on the bus died.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has condoled the deaths due to the landslide saying, "Pained by the loss of lives due to landslide related accidents in HP's Mandi district".

Rescue operations are underway to rescue the people who remain stranded on the Manali-Pathankot NH-154.

Chief minister Virbhadra Singh also visited the spot.

Another 10 people are missing after the landslide swept away cars, vans and buses in Himachal Pradesh. "My condolences with the families of the deceased", Modi said in a tweet. The State Revenue and Transport departments would provide compensation as per the relief manual, said Revenue Minister Kaul Singh Thakur. Five houses were also damaged in the landslide.

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