By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 13 Feb: At the Tapovan disaster site in district Chamoli, 204 persons were reported missing in all of which 166 are still reported missing while 38 bodies have been recovered so far by the rescue teams engaged in rescue operations there. Of the 38 bodies that have been recovered so far, 13 have been identified while 25 bodies were still unidentified. In addition according to the official reports, 4 large domestic animals and 180 smaller animals have also lost their lives in the disaster. Nilesh Anand Bharne, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Crime and Law and Order/ Spokesperson, Uttarakhand Police said that in addition to the NDRF, ITBP and Army, local police and SDRF and Fire Service personnel were also involved in the search and rescue operations as well as forensic personnel were involved in DNA sampling of the dead bodies. Of the 38 bodies recovered so far, 30 were from Chamoli district, 6 from Rudraprayag, 1 from Pauri Garhwal and 1 from Tehri Garhwal. So far 14 FIRs have been registered in Joshimath Police Station in connection with all the missing people. Along with this, 19 human remains have also been recovered from various places in Chamoli district. The DNA of all the bodies and human remains recovered have been kept for identification in CHC Joshimath, District Hospital Gopeshwar and CHC Karnaprayag following all the norms of sampling and preservation.
So far, 24 bodies and 11 human organs have been cremated with full religious rituals and honor by the committee constituted for disposal of dead bodies as per rules. A control room has been set up at Uttarakhand Police Headquarters under the supervision of Nilesh Anand Bharne, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Crime and Law and Order / Spokesperson Uttarakhand Police. The phone number of the Control Room is 0135-2712685 and mobile number 9411112985. Police from other states has also been contacted to identify the missing persons. Jewellery, tattoos and other identification marks found from the dead bodies are being protected by photography and videography. The phone number of control room established in district Chamoli is 01372-251487 and mobile number is 9084127503.
According to the official sources, 21 employees of Ritwik Company are missing while 94 employees of an associate company of Ritwik Company are reported missing. 3 employees of HCC Company, 21 of Om Metal, 2 persons of Tapovan Village, 2 of Ringi Village, 6 of Raini Village and 2 of Karchho Village are reported missing besides 53 posted at Rishiganga Project including 2 policemen deputed there. In all 11 villages are reported missing and their water supply too has been cut off and is being restored now. Rescue operations in the tunnel were affected due to backflow of sludge that is present in the tunnel. In all 5 bridges are also damaged. More than 176 NDRF personnel, 100 SDRF personnel, 425 ITBP personnel, 124 Army personnel, 6 medical teams are engaged in rescue operations besides local police personnel. In addition hundreds of personnel have been engaged as standby personnel.