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Rains briefly hit relief efforts, another 60,000 evacuated

Relief operations in flood-hit Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) were briefly hampered on Sunday morning due to rains even as the Armed forces and NDRF rescued another 60,000 people trapped in flood waters in Kashmir Valley.

Over 100,000 people are still marooned several days after the worst floods in the state in a century unleashed a trail of death and destruction.

Mild rainfall occurred in many parts of the Valley this morning, triggering fears about more trouble in the area which is already reeling under the devastation caused by incessant rains last week.

However, the rainfall which started at around 8.30 am stopped within an hour.

In view of the rainfall and dense clouds, Indian Air Force halted its flights to ferry relief supplies even though emergency operations of transporting medicines were maintained, IAF officials said, adding normal relief operations by IAF choppers resumed at 11.15 am.

Syed Abid Rasheed Shah, sub-divisional magistrate, Srinagar,  said that inclement weather will create problems as many people are still on the roads and without shelter.

At some places, people are putting up in tents which are not waterproof, he said.

IMD Director B P Yadav said, “There was mild rainfall in the morning. But, we have not issued any warning. There would be no heavy rainfall in the State today.” Continuing their rescue operations for the 13th day, armed forces and NDRF personnel rescued another 60,000 people caught in flood waters in Kashmir Valley since yesterday.

“Armed Forces and NDRF have so far rescued over 2 lakh persons from different parts of J&K in the ongoing rescue and Relief operations,” a senior Army officer told PTI.

Of these, 1.20 lakh people have been rescued by Army alone, the officer said, adding the operation is going on.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had said said yesterday that as per the figures available with the state government so far, 129 people had lost lives in Jammu region whereas 30-35 people were found dead in Kashmir Valley.

According to unofficial estimates, the death roll was around 250.

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