Hyderabad: Over 3,000 pilgrims from Andhra Pradesh stranded in Uttarakhand for the past four days were safe and efforts were on to rescue them and send back to the state, Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy said.
Making an announcement in the state Assembly this afternoon, the Chief Minister said the Uttarakhand government pressed 12 helicopters into service to airlift the pilgrims stranded on roads in the Uttarkasi region.
"I have spoken to Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna over phone while our Chief Secretary P K Mohanty is in constant touch with his counterpart there. As rain stopped only this morning, the state government there pressed 12 helicopters into service for the rescue operation," Reddy informed the Assembly.
Rescue operations were hampered because of incessant rains in the last three days while a 70-km stretch of road totally collapsed, he added.
"But we have information that all pilgrims from our state are safe in Uttarakhand and efforts were on to bring them back soon.
"Control rooms have been opened in Hyderabad, New Delhi (AP Bhavan) and Dehradun for information about the stranded pilgrims," the chief minister said.
Food and medical assistance is also being provided to them, he added.