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Rescue Operation Continues to Locate 25-35 Workers Trapped Inside Tapovan Tunnel | India News

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JOSHIMATH: Rescuers from multiple agencies including ITBP, NDRF, and Army continued their operation Wednesday to penetrate deeper through tons of silt to reach workers trapped inside the Tapovan tunnel, as the toll in the flash floods of Uttarakhand increased to 32 with over 170. missing.
The center of operations, following Sunday’s disaster in the Chamoli border district, remains the large tunnel where some 30-35 workers are believed to have been trapped after the Alaknanda River plunged into an avalanche as a result of a possible rupture. from a glacier or avalanche in the Himalayas.
Rescuers “hope against hope” to find the Tapovan power project workers who have been missing for more than three days.
With every minute that passes, concern for the safety of these men grows.
Officials on the ground and those monitoring the rescue from Delhi told PTI that the continued accumulation of mud and sludge inside the tunnel is the biggest obstacle for rescuers.
“The heavy machines have removed more mud from the tunnel overnight. A joint team of ITBP, NDRF, SDRF and sister agencies entered the tunnel this morning.
“The tunnel can be accessed up to about 120 meters, but the presence of more snow and water inside the tunnel makes the way difficult,” said Indo-Tibetan border police spokesman Vivek Kumar Pandey in Delhi.
Measures such as drilling to bring oxygen to those trapped inside the tunnel are being considered, said project consultant AK Shrivastava at the site in Tapovan.
The 1,500-meter tunnel has become the focal point of rescue operations, even as relatives of the trapped spend hours outside with bated breath to hear good news about their relatives.
The multi-agency group of rescuers also flew a camera-equipped drone into the tunnel on Tuesday, but due to darkness, they were unable to identify the location of survivors or the way forward, a senior National Response Force official said. a Disasters.
“We are still hopeful. Crews will continue to make attempts, clearing the mud to go deeper into the tunnel and locate those trapped,” he said.
The ITBP has deployed a team of approximately 450 people in addition to those from the NDRF, the state disaster response force and the Army.
When contacted, Uttarakhand Police Director General Ashok Kumar said that every effort would be made to save the lives of those trapped inside the tunnel.
According to the latest updates provided by the State Emergency Operations Center here, 32 bodies have been recovered from different locations in the disaster-affected areas, while 174 are still missing.

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