Forty-five students from Roorkee's Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), who had gone trekking in Himachal Pradesh's mountainous Lahaul and Spiti district, are stranded due to bad weather. The Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister said the trekkers are safe. Nearly 300 people, including the IIT students are stranded in Lahaul and Spiti.
"The group of 50 trekkers which includes IIT-Roorkee students are safe in Sissu area of Lahaul-Spiti," Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister told news agency ANI.
Himachal Pradesh has seen heavy rain and snowfall in many areas in the last couple of days. At least eight people have been killed in rain-related incidents in the state in the last two days.
Following snowfall, the Rohtang Pass and inner roads in the area got blocked due to which about 300 people, including the students who were on a trekking expedition, were stranded, Keylong Sub Divisional Magistrate Amar Negi said.
He said two Air Force helicopters have been sought from the state government for rescuing the stranded people. The stranded people were being provided shelter and food by the district administration. The border road organisation (BRO) has cleared about six-km-long Keylong-Stingri road and work is on to clear other blocked inner roads.
Two German nationals who were caught in a blizzard in Lahaul-Spiti for the last two days were rescued by the Air Force on Tuesday.
Schools have been directed to remain closed in Kangra, Kullu and Hamirpur districts on Tuesday as a precautionary measure.
The state capital, Shimla, witnessed 53.3 mm of rain in the last 24 hours. Keylong, the administrative centre of tribal Lahaul and Spiti district, continued to be the coldest area in the state with lowest temperature of 0.2 degrees celsius.
The reservoir level in Pong Dam, also known as Beas Dam, is inching towards the danger level of 1,390 feet. The water level of the Dam has already reached 1,389 feet at 10 am on Tuesday, it added.
The residents of low-lying areas in the state and neighbouring Punjab should remain vigilant, it said, adding that the authorities have already been asked to make all kinds of preparations.
The weather office said the intensity of the rain could reduce with light to moderate rain in some places.
(With inputs from PTI)