Glacier burst in Uttarakhand causes flash floods; three bodies recovered while many others missing

14 people have been killed and over 170 are still missing, after a part of a glacier burst in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district on Sunday, triggering an avalanche and a deluge in the Alaknanda river system that washed away hydroelectric stations and five bridges.

The burst glacier also swept away roads and forced authorities to evacuate villages. National and state disaster response teams have been deployed, as have teams from the ITBP. The Army has sent six columns and the Navy seven diving teams.

It was an exceptionally bright Sunday morning when Mahatami Devi, 42, stepped out of her house in Uttarakhand’s Jugju village to fetch firewood and cattle fodder from the neighbouring Raini village. One of her three sons, 17-year-old Ankit, was home at the time. “I met her around 8am. I was going uphill with three men to carve a pagdandi (pathway) in Raini. She was headed downhill. She said a quick hello and moved ahead,” Sangram Singh Rawat, former gram panchayat member of Raini village

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