9 dead, 7 missing in HP flash floods

9 dead, 7 missing in HP flash floods
State Disaster Management Director Sudesh Kumar Mokhta said seven people died in Lahaul-Spiti flash floods triggered by a cloudburst over Tozing Nullah in Udaipur.Representational Photo (File/GK)

Shimla: At least nine people were killed and seven reported missing in flash floods triggered by heavy rainfall in Himachal Pradesh, an official said on Wednesday.

State Disaster Management Director Sudesh Kumar Mokhta said seven people died in Lahaul-Spiti flash floods triggered by a cloudburst over Tozing Nullah in Udaipur.

Two men were dead in Chamba district, he added.

In Kullu district, four people, including a hydro project official and a Delhi tourist, were missing and feared dead.

In Lahaul-Spiti's Udaipur, 12 labourers were washed in flash floods around 8 pm on Tuesday, Mokhta said. Seven bodies were recovered, two rescued with injuries and three were still missing, he added.

Four of the dead were from Himachal Pradesh's Mandi while one was from Reasi of Jammu and Kashmir. Two bodies were yet to be identified.

The dead were identified as Sher Singh (62), Mehar Chand (50), Nirath Ram (42) and Room Singh (41), all from Mandi; and Mohammed Slaim of Kunderdhan in Reasi, J&K.

Lahaul-Spiti Deputy Commissioner Neeraj Kumar told PTI that a team of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) had been requisitioned for rescuing the labourers trapped under the debris of the landslide.

However, the NDRF team coming by road was yet to reach the spot. According to latest reports, it has just crossed Kullu.

In Chamba, a helper on an earth-moving machine, Nikku of Salooni, was washed away in a flash flood. Sunil Kumar of the district died after he suddenly fell from a cliff.

In Kullu, 26-year-old Poonam and her four-year-old son Nikunj were swept away in the Brahamganga, a tributary of the Parvati river, near Manikaran around 6.15 am on Wednesday due to a sudden surge in the water level, Mokhta said.

Another woman, Dineeta, a tourist from Delhi, and hydro project official Vijender were also swept away in flash floods, he added.

In Lahaul-Spiti, several roads were blocked and around 60 vehicles were stranded due to multiple landslides, he said.

Many roads in parts of the state were blocked due to landslides.

A car was damaged in a landslide at Vikas Nagar in Shimla city, he said.

Meanwhile, heavy rainfall continued to lash parts of the state.

The Shimla Meteorological Centre has issued a "red" weather warning.

On Tuesday, several people were evacuated from Lahaul-Spiti's Darcha village after water levels rose in the Bhaga river following a heavy spell of rain, Mokhta said.

According to the Darcha police check-post, the water level in the river increased considerably due to the heavy rainfall, damaging three shops near the river bank.

People living near low-lying areas have been safely evacuated by police, Mokhta said.

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