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After flash floods due to cloudburst, Amarnath Yatra restarts today, search continues for pilgrims missing in tragedy

By Ruchi Upadhyay 
Updated Date

Jammu: The Amarnath Yatra, which was partially halted after 16 people died due to flash floods near the holy cave after heavy rains, resumed on Monday morning. The trip started three days after floods near the Amarnath cave in south Kashmir due to the Kumbh rains. We have full faith in Bhole Baba and are waiting for Baba’s darshan. We are glad that the journey has resumed. Guided by other CRPF personnel. Amarnath pilgrims said that we are moving ahead safely.

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Pilgrims resumed the yatra at the Baltal base camp. On Friday, 16 people were killed and 36 others were missing due to floods near the Amarnath cave shrine. Another 34 injured pilgrims were airlifted to the hospital by Indian Air Force and Cheetal helicopters. Jammu and Kashmir Lt. Governor (LG) Manoj Sinha visited the base camp in Pahalgam on Sunday and met the pilgrims. The flood-damaged road was repaired. The Indian Army has informed that they are using rescue equipment to speed up rescue operations in the flood-affected areas of Jammu.

43 flights of air force helicopters on the third day
The Air Force started flights as soon as the weather cleared at 2 pm on the third day of the rescue operation. On Sunday, 34 injured were shifted to Srinagar hospital in 43 flights by two Mi-17 and 4 Cheetal helicopters till evening. On Sunday, 8.5 tonnes of relief material was also airlifted.

The critically injured patients were airlifted to Srinagar. “Critically injured people were airlifted to Srinagar. 2 people who were buried but were alive were rescued. We`re taking all precautionary steps. 41 missing as per Jammu and Kashmir police out of which some were rescued. Yatra may resume within a day or two,” said Kuldiep Singh, DG, CRPF.

A State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) official said the debris was 6 to 10 feet high. The army has deployed state-of-the-art equipment and heavy machinery in the search operation. Wherever the dog squad is indicating in the rescue operation, digging is being done. As time goes on, concerns about missing people are also increasing. The way the debris has come in the flood, the survival of the person trapped in it for so long will not be less than a miracle.

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