At least 45 bodies were recovered from the debris of the massive landslide that hit Himachal Pradesh’s Mandi district on Saturday night, Deputy Commissioner Sandeep Kadam said on Sunday. Several others were injured in the disaster, and rescue operations are still on.
Two Himachal Road Transport Corporation buses – both from Manali – were trapped under boulders, state Transport Minister GS Bali said, adding that they fear around 50 people had been washed away, The Times of India reported.
Teams from the Army and the National Disaster Response Force were called in. They have been working on rescuing those still trapped since 2 am on Sunday, he said.
“Three vehicles were stranded after the landslide. A bus had also rolled down to nearly 800 meters from the National Highway, and four people have been rescued from the debris,” Deputy Commissioner of Mandi, Sandeep Kadam told ANI. He added that rain was hampering the rescue efforts.
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh visited the site and was apprised of the rescue operations. He announced an ex gratia of Rs 5 lakh for the next of kin of all the victims.