Monsoon Fury: 50+ Dead in HP Landslides, Cloudburst; U’khand Records 3 Deaths, Chardham Yatra Suspended

Over 50 people were killed in Himachal Pradesh on Monday after heavy rains wrecked havoc, triggering triggering landslides that blocked key roads, damaged homes and buried devotees in the rubble of a temple in Shimla. Meanwhile, in Uttarakhand the Chardham yatra has been suspended for two days after three people were killed and 10 others went missing following landslides which disrupted national highways to the pilgrim sites.

Himachal Pradesh

Union Home Minister Amit Shah said teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) are engaged in relief and rescue operations in the hill state. All schools and colleges in the state were closed on Monday.

The relief and rescue efforts involved personnel from the Army, SDRF, NDRF, ITBP, state police, and other agencies, as stated in an official announcement.

The weather department has issued a yellow warning for heavy rains on Tuesday and predicted a wet spell in the state till August 18. The weather office had predicted extremely heavy rains in nine out of 12 districts of the state, barring Kullu, Kinnaur and Lahaul and Spiti on Monday.

Nineteen people died in rain-related incidents in Mandi district, Deputy Commissioner Arindam Chaudhary told PTI.

Landslides Strike Shimla

Authorities have retrieved fourteen bodies from the locations of two landslides in the state capital and there are concerns that additional individuals might be trapped beneath the rubble of the Shiva temple in the Summer Hill region of Shimla. The temple was filled with worshippers who had gathered to offer prayers during a significant day in the holy month of Sawan.

A second landslide in Shimla occurred of which five bodies were pulled from the debris in the Fagli region, along with the successful rescue of 17 individuals, according to Shimla SP Sanjeev Kumar Gandhi.

The ongoing heavy rainfall is posing challenges to the ongoing rescue efforts in Shimla, where numerous areas have been left without electricity since Sunday night due to power line damage caused by landslides and uprooted trees.

Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu had earlier stated that a total of nine bodies have been recovered from the wreckage of a Shiva temple located in the Summer Hill region. Additionally, another site in the Fagli area witnessed the burial of several houses under mud and slush.

Other Districts

Nineteen people died in rain-related incidents in Mandi district, Deputy Commissioner Arindam Chaudhary told PTI.

In Solan, another badly affected district, 11 people including seven members of a family have been killed.

The weather office predicted extremely heavy rains in nine out of 12 districts of the state, barring Kullu, Kinnaur and Lahaul and Spiti, on Monday and issued a yellow warning for Tuesday.

All schools and colleges in the state were closed on Monday. According to the state emergency operation centre, 621 roads were closed in the state because of the calamity.

The chief minister visited the site of the temple collapse in Shimla and said all efforts are being made to rescue people buried underneath the debris.

“Distressing news has emerged from Shimla, where the Shiva Mandir collapsed as a result of the heavy rainfall. As of now, nine bodies have been retrieved. The local administration is diligently working to clear the debris in order to rescue individuals who may still be trapped. Om Shanti,” he posted on X (formerly Twitter).

Deputy Commissioner Arindam Chaudhary said at least nineteen people have died due to rain-related incidents in Mandi district. A landslide resulted in the deaths of seven family members, including a two-year-old, in the Seghli panchayat. Deputy Commissioner Chaudhary stated that three persons were rescued from the incident.

In the severely affected Solan district, eleven people, including seven family members, died.

Hamirpur district recorded four casualties due to insessant rains. Two people remain missing, as one person was swept away by floodwaters and two were successfully rescued on Sunday night. An elderly woman was buried alive while her son was rescued after their house collapsed from the rain.

In Rangas area of Hamirpur, a woman was killed in a landslide, and an 80-year-old man died in a house collapse incident in Bhagatu panchayat.

Solan district’s Jadon village experienced a cloudburst, resulting in the deaths of seven family members. A police official reported that two houses were washed away, six people were rescued, and seven others died. The victims were identified as Harnam (38), Kamal Kishore (35), Hemlata (34), Rahul (14), Neha (12), Golu (8), and Raksha (12).

In Balera panchayat of Solan, two children died when their makeshift house collapsed in a landslide. Another woman lost her life in a landslide in Banal village of Ramsheher tehsil, with an additional casualty reported in the Baddi area.

Six bodies were recovered in Sambhal near Pandoh, yet their identities are pending confirmation. Additionally, two deaths were reported from the Dharampur area. Reports indicated that one boy lost his life in Sirmaur district.

The UNESCO world heritage Shimla-Kalka railway bridge suffered severe damage near Summer Hill in Shimla, with the 50-meter bridge being swept away and the tracks left suspended in the air, officials reported.

Trains on the Shimla-Kalka railway track had been suspended since July 10 due to heavy rains causing landslides and fallen trees. A special train resumed operations on the Shimla-Solan stretch on July 20 after the route was deemed safe by railway authorities.

However, the Solan to Kalka stretch remains closed as repairs continue on the section between Dharampur and Parwanoo, which was heavily damaged recently.


Reviewing the state’s situation, Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami conducted a meeting with senior officials, leading to the suspension of the Chardham yatra for a duration of two days until August 15. Landslides had breached the national highways to Badrinath, Kedarnath and Gangotri shrines.

In response to the Meteorological Department’s issuance of a red alert for heavy to very heavy rainfall in six districts of Uttarakhand – Dehradun, Tehri, Pauri, Udham Singh Nagar, Nainital, and Champawat – Chief Minister Dhami has directed officials to maintain constant vigilance. Additionally, an orange alert has been issued for heavy to very heavy rain in Haridwar.

Pauri Landslide

Heavy rainfall triggered landslides in multiple regions of the state. In the Laxmanjhula area of Pauri district, a landslide resulted in four to five individuals going missing. The landslide, caused by heavy rains, led to debris falling onto a resort, potentially trapping the individuals beneath it, stated Shweta Choubey, Senior Superintendent of Police, Pauri.

Efforts for rescue and relief are underway, with response teams present at the scene, commencing a search operation, Choubey confirmed.

Chief Minister Dhami expressed his condolences in a Facebook post, lamenting the significant loss of life due to the heavy downpour in Pauri.

Monsoon Fury

According to Rudraprayag district disaster management officer Nandan Singh Rajwar, a landslide struck a camp at Lincholi on the Kedarnath trek route, causing damage to four shops. One person from Nepal died in the incident, and a trader is currently missing. The body of 26-year-old Kalu Bahadur has been recovered.

Additionally, two bodies were retrieved from rain-fed streams near Shiv Mandir and Miranagar areas in Rishikesh. One of the deceased has been identified as 35-year-old Dinesh Panwar, a resident of Amit Gram. The identification of the other body is currently underway, stated DSP Sandeep Negi.

Around 114 workers found themselves trapped within the ‘Edit-II’ tunnel of the Rishikesh-Karnaprayag rail line project, as surging waters from a flooded stream in Shivpuri area inundated the passage. The tunnel became submerged with water rising up to four meters, said Ritesh Shah, the Station House Officer (SHO) of Muni-Ki-Reti police station.

Rivers Overflow

The majority of rivers are experiencing overflow, notably the Ganga surpassing the danger threshold in Tehri, Haridwar, and Rishikesh.

In Haridwar, the situation is concerning, with the Ganga reaching a height of 295.60 meters, exceeding the danger mark by 1.60 meters. Floodwaters have inundated over two dozen villages in Haridwar district, causing the destruction of sugarcane crops over an area of more than 100 bighas, as reported by officials.

The Bairagi camp in Haridwar has also been engulfed by the waters of the Ganga.

The Alaknanda, Mandakini, and Ganga rivers are registering water levels above the danger mark at Rudraprayag, Shrinagar and Devprayag, according to updates from the disaster control room.

(With inputs from PTI)

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