Hours after an alternative 15cm lifeline reached the Silkyara Tunnel, where 41 workers had been trapped for more than a week, rescuers are filling Khichdi into cylindrical bottles to send to the stranded workers.
Hemant, the cook who prepared the Khichdi for the trapped workers, said this is the first time that a hot meal has been sent to the workers.
“This food is sent into the tunnel. This is the first time a hot meal has been sent. We send Khichdi. We only prepare the food recommended to us,” he said.
#WATCH | Uttarkashi (Uttarakhand) Tunnel Rescue: Food items including Khichdi and Dal are prepared and packed for delivery to the people trapped in the tunnel
Chef Hemant says, “Food will be sent to the people trapped inside. For the first time, hot food will be sent… pic.twitter.com/dAVZSSi1Ne
— ANI (@ANI) November 20, 2023
On November 12, it was reported that a collapse occurred in an under-construction tunnel from Silkyara to Barkot due to mud falling in the 60-meter stretch on the Silkyara side of the tunnel, trapping 41 workers.
Earlier in the day, a 6-inch pipe reached the 1.2-mile tunnel section of the collapsed structure where workers were trapped through a major breach.
Rescue operation leader Colonel Deepak Patil said we can send food, mobile phones and chargers into the tunnel through this alternate lifeline.
About the food items to be sent to the trapped workers, he said that keeping in mind the condition of the workers, a list of available food options has been prepared with the help of doctors.
“We are bringing wide mouth plastic cylindrical bottles so that we can send bananas, apples, Khichdi and Daliya,” he added.
Earlier in the day, National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) Director Anshu Manish Khulko said there was an atmosphere of joy among the trapped workers after they heard about the breakthrough.
The NHIDCL director said that the rescuers will now go in full force to evacuate the workers.
“Previously there was doubt about what would happen if the first lifeline was closed. But now that we have established an alternative lifeline, we are now moving full steam ahead,” Khulko said.
Meanwhile, two Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) robotic machines – weighing 20 kg and 50 kg – have arrived at the site.
On the use of DRDO’s robotic machine, the NHIDCL director said, “An attempt was made to use that machine inside, but as I told you, the layers and debris inside (the tunnel) are very loose, so it was not successful there.”
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)