Uttarakhand rains: part of Kedarnath compound washed away, temple not damaged

Uttarakhand rains: part of Kedarnath compound washed away, temple not damaged
Kedarnath:  The heavy rains in Uttarakhand have washed away a portion of Kedarnath shrine compound but the temple authorities said there have been no reports of damage to the temple.

"We have received some reports that a portion of the temple compound has been washed away. However, there has been no damage to the temple. Since it is not possible to reach there, the exact assessment of the damage cannot be ascertained. It is very difficult to get real-time information from the temple as communication links have been broken," Ansuya Singh Negi, Officer on Special Duty, Shri Badrinath Shri Kedarnath Temple Committee, told PTI over phone.

The officer said they are trying to help the stranded pilgrims in the best possible way but due to difficult terrain and worsening weather, the efforts are yielding little results.

He said efforts to send rescue teams by helicopters are on.

The shrine is located at 3581 meters height which can be reached either by ponies or through a trek of 14 kilometers from Gauri Kund or by helicopter but because of weather the first two methods are not feasible.

Flash floods, cloudbursts and landslides have claimed more than 50 lives in Uttarakhand and damaged a lot of houses across the state.

Officials said the toll could rise as there are many areas where rescue teams are yet to reach and start rescue operations.

Rudraprayag was the worst hit with around 20 people reported dead and buildings along the banks of the Alaknanda, swept away in the swirling waters of the river.

A total of 71,440 pilgrims bound for the Himalayan shrines of Kedarnath, Badrinath, Gangotri and Yamunotri are stranded in Rudraprayag, Chamoli and Uttarkashi districts of Uttarakhand with the char dham yatra having been suspended.

Story First Published: June 18, 2013 20:16 IST

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