More than 100 people are feared dead after a glacier broke off in the Himalayas, tumbling into an Indian dam and causing major flooding.
The incident occurred on Sunday morning in the Chamoli district of the northern India state of Uttarakhand.
The state’s chief secretary Om Prakash told Reuters up to 150 people were feared dead but “the actual number has not been confirmed yet”.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he is “constantly monitoring the unfortunate situation”.
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Around 600 army personnel have been sent to the region so far to assist.
TheTimes of India has reported three bodies have been found, while work is underway to rescue 16 people trapped inside of a tunnel.
A nearby hydropower project has been swept away completely according to local authorities and it’s feared workers at the project have been too.
An eyewitness toldReutershe saw a wall of dust, rock and water surge down the river valley.
“It came very fast, there was no time to alert anyone,” he told the outlet.
Uttar Pradesh, a neighbouring state that is India’s most populous, issued alerts for its riverside areas.
Uttarakhand chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said he was on the scene with his team monitoring the situation, and that “there is no flood situation anywhere” but the river is flowing a metre above its normal levels.
In a follow up he said there was “no cause for panic” and appealed for people to “not believe rumours”.