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Himachal Reports 17 Deaths and 1692 New COVID-19 Infections in 24 Hours

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There is no respite from the the second wave of COVID-19 that is breaking havoc in the state as well as the nation. The fatality rate is reaching alarming levels. The state has reported 33 COVID-19 deaths in just 48 hours. After reporting 16 fatalities on Tuesday, the number rose to 17 on Wednesday.

Kangra district reported the highest 509 new cases and four fatalities. Four fatalities were reported from Shimla district, followed by Solan (3), Sirmaur (2), Hamirpur (2), Una (2). The deceased were aged between 37 to 84 years. At least four patients were reported to have died of ARDS and one from Respiratory failure with ARDS. They had no other medical condition, according to the official report of the state health department. 

Find more details on the deceased below:  

daily covid-19 deaths in himachal pradesh on april 21

Source: HP NHM

The total number of infections in the state has risen to 81102, of which 10793 are active. The COVID-19 death tally for the state has mounted to 1223.  

Find more district-wise details below:

Daily covid-19 update for april 21

Source: HP NHM

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Kinnaur: Ban on Trekking, Mountaineering in District After Two Horrid Tragedies

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Shimla-Following two separate tragic incidents where 10 tourists, who had undertaken trekking expeditions into high altitude areas of Himachal Pradesh’s Kinnaur district, went missing and were later found dead, the district administration has decided to put a complete ban on such activities in the region for the time being.

The Deputy Commissioner, Kinnaur district, Apoorv Devgan, on Monday issued a notification regarding the same.

“A large number of trekking enthusiasts scale the treacherous mountain treks/peaks of the district, making it a hotspot for these adventure activities. However, during the onset and peak of the winter season, the climatic conditions tend to change quickly, which poses a great threat to the life of the trekkers,” the notification said.   

“Also undertaking search and rescue missions in such conditions are very risky which makes it necessary to restrict the trekking and mountaineering activities in the season,” the notification said.

Citing these reasons, the DC, under Section 34 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, ordered the imposition of ban on trekking and mountaineering on all the treks in the district till further orders.  He said legal action would be taken against violators.

It’s pertinent to mention that in two separate instances, 10 such tourists have died during the past week. On October 13, a group of 11 trekkers with six Nepalese porters had left from Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand, to Chitkul, on a trekking expedition. They were supposed to reach Chitkul on October 19. However, as the weather took a turn and led to heavy snowfall in the region, the trekkers got stuck at Lamkhaga Pass in Kinnaur district. While the porters decided to keep going and reached Chitkul on October 20, the trekkers decided to camp at the Pass. Later, during an ongoing rescue operation, two tourists were rescued alive in wounded condition, and dead bodies of seven of them were recovered. Two of them are still missing. These tourists included persons from Mumbai and guides from Uttarakhand.

In the second instance, 13 tourists left from Janglik of Rohru, Shimla district, on a trekking expedition to Sangla, Kinnaur district, on October 19. However, by October 24, they got stuck in bad weather conditions. Three of them died while the rescue team of police rescued 1o of them safely. Most of these tourists hailed from West Bengal.

Travel/trekking agencies have also been blamed for these two tragedies as they ignored warnings issued by the Meteorological Department and led these tourists into death traps. Moreover, the governments haven’t set any strict criteria for granting licenses to such agencies/guides. Often untrained and novice youth organize these expeditions, resulting in such disasters.

While the tough mountains of Himachal’s higher altitude regions lure tourists who wish to satisfy their appetite for adventure, many of them tend to be unaware of the lethal risks they pose, especially with untrained guides. The two tragic instances have aptly proved it.    

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Rs.18 Crore Mandi Shiv Dham Project Tender Allotted for Rs. 36 Crores, Alleges Sudhir Sharma  

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Mandi Shiv Dham Project Tender

Shimla-Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jairam Thakur, and Mandi Shivdham project, which he claims to be his dream project, has landed in controversy ahead of the polling for the by-polls scheduled to be held on October 30.

AICC secretary and former minister, Sudhir Sharma, on Saturday released a statement in which he alleged HP Tourism Development Corporation of indulging in corruption in allotment of tender for the Mandi Shivdham development project. He alleged that against the sanctioned limit of Rs. 18 crores, the tender for the development of the first phase of the project was granted to a Mumbai-based company “Generic Engineering Construction & Projects Limited” in February this year.

The project involves structural construction of replicas of 12 Jyotirlings, site development etc., as per the tender.

He also said that the Chief Minister himself holds charge of the Tourism Department.

Sudhir also furnished some documents related to the tender allocation to support his allegations.

He further informed that the tenders were first invited for the first phase between November 24 and 25, 2020. At that time, the estimated cost was mentioned to be Rs. 18 crores. Four companies responded to the invitation and participated in the tendering process. However, by February this year, the tender was allotted to the above-mentioned company for Rs. 36 crores.

Sudhir questioned the state government over doubling the cost and asked the Chief Minister to provide the public with an explanation for this.

“This money belongs to the State and it should be spent on public welfare,” Sudhir said in a statement released on Saturday.

He also demanded action against those involved in this alleged act of corruption.

Sudhir further alleged that instead of taking care and undertaking beautification of already existing temples and religious places in Mandi – also known as Choti Kashi- Chief Minister jumped to a new location with his dream project. He also alleged that the government didn’t even obtain forest clearance for this project and several trees were axed.

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Kinnaur: Horrific Tragedy Unfolds as Bodies of 7 Out of 11 Missing Trekkers Recovered, Two Still Missing

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Kinnaur-A horrific tragedy is unfolding as bodies of seven trekkers, who had gone missing while trekking from Uttarkashi to Chitkul, were recovered by the teams of Army and ITPB from Lamkhaga Pass in Kinnaur district. Two of them have been rescued alive and were receiving medical treatment. Two trekkers are still missing and feared to be dead.

Most of these persons belonged to West Bengal. 

The rescue team could not lift the bodies due to the bad weather on Thursday as it had to suspend the search and rescue operation. The operation was resumed on Friday. The search operation for the remaining missing persons would be carried out on Saturday. The search and rescue teams found the bodies at an altitude of 5,000 metres.

According to the available information, a total of 17 persons – 11 trekkers and six porters- had left Uttarkashi on October 11 on a trekking expedition that was supposed to conclude in Chikul of Kinnaur district on October 19. However, the weather took a drastic turn and the region witnessed heavy snowfall on October 17 and 18.

While six Nepalese porters were said to have reached Chitkul, the trekkers had decided to stay in temporary tents at Lamkhaga Pass. The porters had informed the police about the stranded trekkers on reaching Chitkul on October 20.

The Deputy Commissioner, Kinnaur, Abid Hussain, confirmed that nine of these trekkers have been found. While two were alive, seven had died. The exact reason for deaths would be ascertained only after the post-mortem. Two trekkers still remain missing. More information is awaited.

It’s pertinent to mention that the Meteorological Department had issued warning of heavy rain and snow on October 18 alonwith an orange alert. 

Following are the details of the bodies recovered and persons rescued alive:

Deceased Persons

  1. Anita Rawat (38) D/o Sh. Jyoti Singh R/o M 95 Harinagar, West Bengal
  2. Tanmay Tiwari (30), S/o Sh R.C. Tiwari, R/o Kishan Nagar, Kolkata 3
  3. Vikas Makal(33) son of Swapan Maikal, Raghabpur Nepalganj, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal
  4. Saurabh Gosh (34) S/o Sushil Ghosh, R/o Nepalganj, South 24 West Bengal
  5. Subhayan Das (28) S/o Kajal Das, R/o 10/1A Nepal Bhatacharia G Streak Kalighat, West Bengal
  6. Richard Mandal (31) From West Bengal
  7. Upender (22) from Uttarkashi

Detail of Missing persons:

  1. Sukenh Manjhi(43) From West Bengal
  2. Gyan Chand (33) from Uttarkashi

Details of Injured Person

  1. Devendra Chauhan, S/o Hariram, R/o Village Gangad, Thana Mary, Uttarkashi. (company guide)
  2. Mithun Dari, S/o Swar Badal Ch Dari, R/o Prasadpur, PostAndhar Manik, South 24 Pargans, West Bengal

 

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