Uttarakhand was shaken on Sunday when a part of the Nanda Devi glacier broke off in Chamoli district, triggering an avalanche and a deluge in the Alaknanda river system that washed away hydroelectric stations with major loss of lives and property.
Around 18 people are feared to be dead in the unfortunate disaster and more than 170 are still missing.
The sudden flood in the middle of the day in the Dhauli Ganga, Rishi Ganga and Alaknanda rivers -- all intricately linked tributaries of the Ganga -- triggered widespread panic and large-scale devastation in the high mountain areas.
The prompt action of the Disaster teams and state relief teams have successfully evacuated hundreds of people. NDRF, ITBP and army have been deployed in the affected areas to rescue people. However, the extremely low temperature with loads of mud and debris in the tunnel is posing a major challenge for the rescue operators.
According to NDTV, about 12 people were trapped in an under-construction tunnel and rescued by an Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) team. The Uttarakhand Disaster Response Team is making efforts to clear the mud and rescue people stranded in the tunnel
"Our team reached at 3 am. They've started the rescue operations. We hope for the best and are doing our best. We're using the latest and the best of the equipment. The terrain is so rugged and the temp reached up to sub-zero (conditions). In such conditions, it is difficult to conduct rescue operations. But our team is doing its best," NDRF commandant Praveen Kumar Tiwary told NDTV reporter.
PM Modi and several other leaders have expressed solidarity with the people of Uttarakhand and offered all possible help to minimise the damage.
The glacier burst led to a rise in water levels in the river Rishiganga, which washed away the Rishiganga small hydro project of 13.2 MW.
The Uttarakhand Police warned people not to go anywhere near riverbank in Chamoli and alerted them on the increased water levels in the area
The flash flood also affected the downstream hydro project of NTPC at Tapovan on the river Dhauli Ganga, which is a tributary of the river Alaknanda
With PTI Inputs