18 Dead In Uttarakhand Glacier Disaster, search continues for 200 People!

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Uttarakhand, unfortunately, is not any stranger to disaster. But yet one more massive tragedy struck the Himalayan state on 7 February 2021, the smallest amount expected on a chilly winter Sunday morning; a minimum of fifteen people have thus far been confirmed dead, and about 190 are missing — besides, several dams, roads, houses, bridges and other infrastructure are destroyed or damaged.

There is however, a tragedy within that tragedy. Almost each day after the tragedy started unfolding around 10 AM, forget the question of getting prior warning for disaster prevention or minimisation efforts, there’s still no clarity on where precisely the disaster originated, when exactly it originated, what factors led thereto , and what was the magnitude at the place of origin.

The Uttarakhand government agencies are talking about ‘glacier bursts’, the NTPC (developer of the damaged 520 MW under-construction Tapovan Vishnugad hydropower project) is talking about an ‘avalanche’, and still others are talking about the ‘bursting of water pockets within the glaciers’, ‘cloud burst’, etc — with neither clarity nor details about any of those hypotheses.

Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat says on Twitter that the government has released ₹20 crore for relief to the affected people, reviews the progress of rescue operations with senior officials.