New Delhi: Notwithstanding the plea by Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde that Chief Ministers should avoid visiting Uttarakhand for now, Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Monday travelled to the flood-hit parts of the state.
Chavan said he visited Haridwar and Dehradun to oversee the operations being conducted by officials of Maharashtra to rescue the people from the state. 150 people from the state are said to be untraceable.
He said close to 450 people out of the estimated 4,500 in Badrinath were from Maharashtra and a team of 49 state officers was coordinating rescue work for them from various places, including Dehradun, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Badrinath and Joshimath.
After his visit to Uttarakhand, he told reporters here that he had asked the state`s control room to identify all those who had gone to the hilly-state, including their last contact point.
"We are not able to contact 150 persons... Their mobile phones are not working," he said.
Chavan said he went to the camp site in Haridwar where the railways has arranged special bogies to take rescued people home. They were also given Rs 2000 as pocket money besides food and medicine, he said.
Significantly, Chavan undertook the visit two days after Shinde said Chief Ministers should avoid going to flood-affected areas because the administration would be distracted and it would hamper rescue work.
Shinde had made the statement apparently keeping in mind the visit of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.