At least 60 people died this week so far due to landslides and flashfloods in Himachal Pradesh, home to scenic mountains and a popular tourist destination that has been battered by heavy rain since last week.
Dozens have died in landslides in Summer Hill, Krishna Nagar and Fagli in state capital Shimla since Sunday, while another was reported this morning in Summer Hill again.
An official said 13 bodies have been recovered from the debris in Summer Hill, five from Fagli and two from Krishna Nagar. Several others are feared buried in the debris of a temple that collapsed on Monday.
A landslide washed away around eight houses in Krishna Nagar in the heart of Shimla last evening, killing two people. Several other houses were vacated.
A cloudburst incident in Solan district killed seven people on Monday.
Over 800 people have been rescued from the low-lying areas and evacuation efforts are on, Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh said today, sharing a video of rescued citizens alighting a helicopter.
He has pegged the death figure at 60 in the last three days. A meeting was convened where structural norms and drainage issues were taken up, he said. “There has been a lot of damage due to the rain. Restoration will take time, but it will be done on a war footing,” he had assured.
All schools and colleges across the state will remain closed till August 19 in view of the extreme weather. Himachal Pradesh University too has suspended teaching activities till then.
Officials said at least 800 roads are blocked in the state due to landslides and the state has suffered losses worth thousands of crores this monsoon season.
Both Himachal Pradesh and neighbouring Uttarakhand, which too has witnessed dozens of deaths this monsoon season, are set to receive more rain, according to weather forecast.
The state Congress, which is in power in the state, has sought help from the central government and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi should declare Himachal Pradesh a disaster-hit state.
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