One more body was recovered from the flash flood affected Tapovan dam in district Chamoli on Sunday. With this the toll number has mounted to 68. The rescuers are conducting continuous search in the disaster hit area since the past 16 days. Still 136 persons remain missing.

A joint team of Indo-Tibetan Border Police and Defence Research and Development Organisation returned to Joshimath on Saturday evening by conducting a detailed study of the artificial lake on the upstream of Rishiganga river. The team will submit its report to the Central and state government authorities. The lake was formed after a landslide blocked the flow of Rishiganga on 7 February. The lake is over 350 Mts long and special focus is conducting scientific study of the water body.

The artificial lake near Muranda in Chamoli has now turned into a major hotspot with the visit of scientists, ITBP, SDRF and NDRF teams. Navy divers were used for the first time at the lake site recently. Using a handheld echo sounder, the divers performed the operation to study the depth of the lake.

According to the state disaster relief force Press release, “A Quick Deployable Antenna system was moved to the lake site by chopper on Sunday. Through the antenna the team deployed for lake monitoring and survey can send live video and audio. A team of 10 scientists and SDRF are working on the lake.”

The 7 February disaster created havoc in the remote part of Chamoli. The search and rescue team are working round the clock to find bodies. The operation is complicated as debris, boulders and water, which entered the Tapovan tunnel during flash flood, is creating a big challenge.