9:42 pm - Tuesday November 3, 2015

9 days in the dark: 2 workers rescued from Bilaspur tunnel

38 Viewed Alka Anand Singh Comments Off on 9 days in the dark: 2 workers rescued from Bilaspur tunnel
53f16f2b-3c14-4e1f-aec6-3db590449e01wallpaper1

Two labourers trapped more than 40 metres underground for over a week in Himachal Pradesh’s Bilaspur district were rescued on Monday, bringing relief to their worried families after a long, tiring operation that suffered many setbacks.

Satish Tomar and Mani Ram were brought out by a National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team around 4:30pm, nine days after they got trapped following a tunnel collapse. Search is on for Hirday Ram, the third worker who was with the duo. His fate is uncertain since there has been no contact with him so far.

On September 12, three workers of the Himalayan Construction Company were trapped in Tunnel Number 4 being built for the Kiratpur-Nerchowk four-lane project after a cave-in blocked the entrance with tonnes of earth and boulders. The 1.2-kilometre tunnel, a project worth Rs 82 crore, had been dug 275 metres when it collapsed 80 metres from the mouth.

Rescuers first made contact with Satish Tomar and Mani Ram on September 17, and food and water were dropped during the week after engineers drilled a thin 47-metre (154-foot) shaft down to the roof of the tunnel.

On Monday morning, an NDRF team made some significant progress in the drilling work on the collapsed tunnel. But, soon rescuers understood that the opening was not big enough to bring out the workers. After more drilling, the final effort was launched in the afternoon.

Earlier in the day, Bilaspur deputy commissioner Manasi Sahay said an experienced official went down “with all the necessary equipment”. The official contacted the two workers and gave them a mobile phone that had songs installed on it.

A remote camera and microphone were lowered on Saturday, allowing rescuers to speak to the two workers, who said they were uninjured.

Using heavy machinery, engineers have spent days trying to dig a wider shaft to allow rescuers to be lowered down into the tunnel, which is part of a highway construction project.

A 50-member team of engineers, technical supervisors, drilling experts and geologists from Sutlej Jal Vidyut Nigam Limited (SJVNL), Border Roads Organisation (BRO), and Himachal Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (HPPCL) was at work to dig a 1.2-metre-wide hole till the tunnel roof to send in an NDRF team.

But efforts were hampered by mechanical breakdowns, NDRF commanding officer Jaideep Singh said from the site in Bilaspur district.

The heavy-duty hydraulic rig positioned at the site three days ago had broken down on Friday night first, but the work had resumed on Saturday. Drilling work on the vertical cavity again came to a halt when the machine broke down on Saturday night and could not be repaired till late afternoon, even as a part was shipped from Delhi overnight.

On Sunday, another technical glitch forced the rescue operation to be put off, prolonging the wait for the workers. Continuous rain since early morning and water ingress in the shaft dug to pull out the trapped men added to the difficulty.

Click here to submit your review.


Submit your review
* Required Field

Don't miss the stories followIndiaVision News and Information and let's be smart!
Loading...
0/5 - 0
You need login to vote.
Filed in
After U.S. President Barack Obama raised the issue of religious intolerance in India, The New York Times published a very strong editorial criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi for what it calls his “dangerous silence” on a series of communal events in the country.The editorial, by the NYT editorial board, lists recent attacks on churches and reports of Ghar Vapsi or conversion and marks out the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) for its proposed conversions programme in Ayodhya in March this year, saying the group “was playing with fire.” “Mr. Modi’s continued silence before such troubling intolerance increasingly gives the impression that he either cannot or does not wish to control the fringe elements of the Hindu nationalist right,” the NYT editorial surmised.Full text of the Editorial published in the New York Times on February 6, 2015:What will it take for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speak out about the mounting violence against India’s religious minorities? Attacks at Christian places of worship have prompted no response from the man elected to represent and to protect all of India’s citizens. Nor has he addressed the mass conversion to Hinduism of Christians and Muslims who have been coerced or promised money. Mr. Modi’s continued silence before such troubling intolerance increasingly gives the impression that he either cannot or does not wish to control the fringe elements of the Hindu nationalist right.Recently, a number of Christian churches in India have been burned and ransacked. Last December, St. Sebastian’s Church in East Delhi was engulfed in fire. Its pastor reported a strong smell of kerosene after the blaze was put out. On Monday, St. Alphonsa’s Church in New Delhi was vandalised. Ceremonial vessels were taken, yet collection boxes full of cash were untouched. Alarmed by the attacks, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India has urged the government to uphold the secular nature of India and to assure its Christians they are “protected and secure” in their own country.There is also concern about the mass conversions. Last December, about 200 Muslims were converted to Hinduism in Agra. In January, up to 100 Christians in West Bengal “reconverted” to Hinduism. Hard-line Hindu nationalist groups, like the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), make no secret of their support for a “homecoming” campaign designed to “return” non-Hindus to the fold. More than 80 per cent of Indians are Hindu, but Pravin Togadia of the VHP says his organisation’s goal is a country that is 100 per cent Hindu. The only way to achieve that is to deny religious minorities their faith.The VHP is reportedly planning a mass conversion of 3,000 Muslims in Ayodhya this month. The destruction of the Babri Mosque there in 1992 by Hindu militants touched off riots between Hindus and Muslims across India that left more than 2,000 people dead. The VHP knows it is playing with fire.Mr. Modi has promised an ambitious agenda for India’s development. But, as President Obama observed in a speech in New Delhi last month: “India will succeed so long as it is not splintered along the lines of religious faith.” Mr. Modi needs to break his deafening silence on religious intolerance.

PM Modi to tour US, Ireland from 23-29 Sept: Here’s what his plans are

25-mohan-bhagwat

Reserved or wait-listed? Why RSS wants ‘review’ of quota policy

Related posts