Uttarakhand (natural disaster)-2013
From 14 to 17 June 2013, the Indian state of Uttarakhand and adjoining areas received heavy rainfall, which was about 375% more than the benchmark rainfall during a normal monsoon.This caused the melting of Chorabari Glacier at the height of 3800 metres, and eruption of the Mandakini River which led to heavy floods near Gobindghat, Kedar Dome, Rudraprayag district, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Western Nepal, and acute rainfall in other nearby regions of Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and some parts of Tibet.
The upper Himalayan territories of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand are full of forests and snow-covered mountains and thus remain relatively inaccessible. They are home to several major and historic Hindu and Sikh pilgrimage sites besides several tourist spots and trekking trails. Heavy rainfall for four consecutive days as well as melting snow aggravated the floods.Warnings by the India Meteorological Department predicting heavy rains were not given wide publicity beforehand, causing thousands of people to be caught unaware, resulting in huge loss of life and property.
Historical place of Uttarakhand
The Kedarnath valley, along with and other parts of the state of Uttarakhand, was hit with unprecedented flash floods on 16 and 17June 2013 almost after 80 years. The temple itself suffered some damage but was still standing. However a portion of the temple complex was washed away, and the Kedarnath town was nearly destroyed in the deluge along with hundreds of devotees.
The Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna on 19th June 2013 announced that the Kedarnath shrine will remain closed for a year for clearing the debris around the shrine.the death count is assumed to be thousands as the the conditions in kedar valley are very adverse.
Here, I would like to show you photos of Kedarnath, Uttarakhand as per Google’s Earth images of that region.
Kedarnath land is actually situated on a river bed of Mandakini river.
frequently asked questions
1) What caused such massive devastation? There are many factors being blamed by people: deforestation; flash flood due to cloud burst; excessive water released suddenly by huge dams made over the years on the Ganga and its tributaries; HAARP; Operation Popeye; cloud seeding by China? Will we ever get to know the truth?
2) What did UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and prime minister Manmohan Singh achieve by an aerial survey? Despite knowing that this would shut off the flight routes over Uttarakhand for rescue choppers on a crucial day, the two went ahead with the visit. As a result, the entire air force machinery had to wait for virtually the entire day to begin rescue operations.
3) Why was there a delay in accessing Kedarnath and Gaurikund to start operations on a war footing straightaway? Why ridiculously low number of helicopters were pressed into duty in the initial days when it had become clear that thousands were stranded and battling for life against rain, cold, hunger and trauma?
4) Why was a "common man" (with Z Plus security) allowed to visit Gaurikund with mediapersons in tow? Did this not disrupt the relief proceedings? Can every common man -- with no business to be there -- also fly to the affected areas with equal ease, especially when the state CM had prohibited all VIP visits?