Expressing grief over the loss of lives after a glacier burst in Uttarakhand, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Uma Bharti on Sunday said that when she was a minister she had opposed the idea of having any power projects on the Himalayan mountain range in the state.
In a series of tweets, she said glacier burst had damaged a power project, triggering a massive crisis in the area.
"Yesterday I was in Uttarkashi. Today I have reached Haridwar. An alert has been issued in Haridwar also, that the devastation can come to Haridwar. This incident which happened on the Rishi Ganga in the Himalayas is a matter of both concern and warning," she tweeted.
"When I was a minister, my ministry in its affidavit about the dams in Uttarakhand in the Himalayas had requested that it is a very sensitive region, and, therefore, power projects should not be built on the Ganges and its main tributaries," she said in another tweet.
"I am deeply saddened by this accident. Uttarakhand is Devbhoomi. The people there live their lives with a lot of difficulties and remain alert to protect the borders of the country with Tibet. I pray to God to protect them all," she added.
A glacier broke in the Tapovan-Reni area of Chamoli District of Uttarakhand on Sunday that triggered massive flooding in Dhauliganga and Alaknanda Rivers and damaged houses and the nearby Rishiganga power project.
"It is suspected that around 100 workers were at the site out of which, 9-10 dead bodies have been recovered from the river," said SS Deswal, Director General, ITBP.
The rescue operations had to be suddenly stopped in Dhauliganga due to the rise in the water level of the river, informed Yashwant Chauhan, Superintendent Police, Chamoli.
Meanwhile, Tapovan Hydro-Electric Power Dam, also known as Rishi Ganga Project was completely washed off following a glacier burst in the Chamoli district, said the Indian Air Force's initial report as Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) deployed at Joshimath has undertaken recce of affected areas.
Uttarakhand Chief Minister has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh each to the kin of those who lost their lives due to the glacial burst.
"We are assuming that around 125 people are missing. The number can be higher," Rawat said. He added that the government has all the needed assistance to handle the situation for now.
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