The Meteorological Department has forecast heavy rains in Uttarakhand for three days, after which the Badrinath Yatra has been stopped. The department has issued a red alert in all 13 districts for October 17, 18 and 19. In view of the forecast of heavy rains, the state government has issued an alert and appealed to the people to stay in their homes. Government offices will remain closed in many places for the next two days.
Devotees were stopped at a safe place
Talking to India Today, Chamoli District Magistrate Himanshu Khurana said that amidst the red alert, devotees coming to Badrinath have been advised not to travel. They have been kept at safe places in Joshimath and Pandukeshwar till the weather clears. He also informed that Monday has been declared a government holiday in all government and private schools, colleges and offices falling in Chamoli district.
The state government issued an alert
The Meteorological Department has warned of heavy rain in the entire Uttarakhand. Apart from this, lightning, storm and in some places winds up to 80 km per hour can also occur. In view of the situation, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami has asked the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) and all the district magistrates to remain alert for the next two days. He said that all arrangements are in place and orders have been issued.
29 teams of SDRF deployed
SDRF Commandant Navneet Singh has asked his teams to be prepared for emergency situations and keep equipment ready. 29 teams have been deployed across the state to deal with disasters like floods, landslides and cloudbursts. In view of the red alert, the government has banned the arrival of people for trekking, camping and mountaineering in the forest area of Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve of Gopeshwar.
Tourists advised avoiding travel
The state government has asked people to stay away from rivers and streams. The statement said that tourists who have come to Uttarakhand should stay at safe places and those planning to visit should avoid travelling for two days.
Rain wreaks havoc in Kerala
On the other hand, the rains have caused huge destruction in Kerala. Here 18 people have died and many have been injured in landslides and other accidents due to rain. A large number of people have been rendered homeless due to houses being washed away. Apart from NDRF, Army, Navy and Air Force personnel have reached Kerala to carry out relief and rescue operations. The Union Home Ministry is also monitoring the situation in Kerala.