Twenty-three Army personnel are missing in Sikkim after a cloudburst triggered flash floods in Teesta river. A massive search has been launched to locate the missing soldiers, the Army has said.
A statement by the Army’s Eastern Command has said some establishments along Lachen valley have been affected. “Release of water from the Chungthang dam led to a sudden increase in water level upto 15-20 feet high downstream. This has led to Army vehicles parked at Bardang near Singtam getting affected. 23 personnel have been reported missing and some vehicles are reported submerged under the slush. Search operations are underway,” the statement said.
It rained heavily all night long in Sikkim. Lhonak Lake in north Sikkim overflowed due to a cloudburst, which also raised the water levels in the Teesta River. Before entering Bangladesh, the Teesta river passes through Sikkim and West Bengal.
Residents of Sikkim are on a high warning from the local government. Videos taken and posted by locals show the river in flood and roads being washed away.
“Nobody has been injured but there has been significant damage to public property. Some people have also been reported missing in Singtam. Relief operations are on,” said Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang said during a visit to an affected area.
The India Meteorological Department has said Teesta is swollen after the lake in Sikkim’s Chungthang overflowed. “Low lying areas such as Gazoldoba, Domohani, Mekhaliganj and Ghish may be affected. Please be alert,” the weather office said.
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