Travelling to Uttarakhand hills? IMD asks tourists, locals to remain alert

IMD has said it will issue a red alert and that heavy to very heavy rainfall is likely till July 3.

Travelling to Uttarakhand hills? IMD asks tourists, locals to remain alert
Rescue operations underway after a 28-seater bus which was headed to Ramnagar from Bhaun fell into a 60-metre gorge near the Queens Bridge on the Pipli-Bhaun road in Uttarakhand''s Pauri Garhwal. (IANS)

New Delhi: Heavy rainfall across the state of Uttarakhand over 24 hours from Sunday has resulted in authorities here urging locals and tourists to remain vigilant.

Monsoon rains have lashed almost every part of the state and the possibility of landslides in higher reaches has not been completely ruled out. Tourists - especially those in private vehicles - are being urged to stick to concrete roads while people at large have been advised to exercise extreme caution. "The state has received heavy rainfall during the past 24 hours as was predicted. Heavy to very heavy rains will persist for another day," said Bikram Singh of India Meteorological Department in the state capital of Dehradun on Monday. "There is a need to stay alert. We shall issue a red alert."

Landslides are a common occurrence in several parts of the state's upper reaches. Roads get blocked with delays and even possible threat to life a reality around this time of the year. The worst of it was in 2013 when local life and tourism took a tragic hit during the June 16 and June 17 flooding. At the time, rampant construction and damage to river beds were primarily blamed for the natural calamity.