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Removal of debris: Bahuguna visits Kedarnath with team of experts

PTI Dehradun | Updated on March 12, 2018

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna visited Kedarnath with a team of experts to speed up the task of removing debris from the flood-ravaged region.

With the removal of a huge amount of debris in Kedarnath posing the biggest challenge to the State Government in calamity-hit Uttarakhand, Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna today visited the Himalayan shrine along with a team of EIPL experts to speed up the mammoth exercise.

Accompanied by Chief Secretary Subhash Kumar and officials of Engineers (India) Projects Ltd, ASI and GSI, Bahuguna arrived at the shrine this morning to explore methods to build a helipad there to accommodate MI26 choppers commissioned to transport heavy equipment such as bulldozers, JCBs and powerful stone cutting tools to Kedar Valley to launch the operations, official sources here said.

EIPL, which has a dedicated team of 500 personnel with expertise in debris removal, was roped in by the State Government to clear the shrine area of tonnes of debris left over by the recent calamity in the State so that regular prayers could be started at the earliest.

The task is mammoth as a huge quantity of debris with the strong possibility of decomposing bodies lying under it, has to be removed from the premises and over 40 badly damaged structures razed to the ground, officials here said.

ASI and GSI experts have also been roped in to provide technical advice to the EIPL team in the rubble clearing operations to prevent further damage, they said.

So much depends on the mercy of the weather which has badly hampered the exercise so far with low visibility conditions induced by overcast skies often making the flight of choppers impossible in Kedarghati.

The authorities have only one-and-half months’ time left to complete the exercise as the possibility of snowfall beginning in the area from September may halt operations midway.

In circumstances such as these, removal of debris from the shrine premises, razing dilapidated structures to the ground and putting all arrangements in place for regular prayers to start at the famed shrine poses the biggest challenge for the Government.

If the adverse weather continues, transportation of heavy equipment to the shrine will be difficult, delaying the debris clearing and rehabilitation work at Kedarnath.

Published on July 22, 2013

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