13 killed, over 50 missing in Seti flood, inlcuding 3 Ukranians
KATHMANDU: 13 peoples lost their lives and over 50 have gone missing due to unprecedented floods in Seti River triggered by the busting of avalanche created temporary lake on Saturday.
The flooded raged across the Machhapuchre VDC of the district and swept away Kharapani settlement on the banks of the river and claimed the lives of tourists that were enjoying their picnic on the banks.
Till Saturday evening rescue team were able to find the body of 13 deceased. Joint rescue team comprising of Nepal Army, Nepal Police, Armed Police Force and Nepal Red Cross claimed that the toll could rise more.
Of the dead, only two have been identified so far. Archana Shrestha (18) of Lekhnath Municipality-8 and Gopal Tamrakar (70) of Sardhikhola-1 were identified of the total dead bodies found.
Above fifty persons, of which three are tourists have gone missing. Kaski Police has informed that the Ukranian citizens Debuniski Alexander, Polunchuk Alaa, Evan Malonokov were missing since the flooding.
Along with the tourists, five locals, who have gone missing, are Dhunge Budha, Dorje Tamang, Chasme Budha, Bishnu Gurung, and Chet Bahadur Thapa.
Regional Police Chief DIG Rajendra Singh claimed that the floods were triggered to the busting of a temporary lake that was formed by the accumulation of rocks, sands and ice from an avalanche in the Annapurna Himalayan Range.
Body of some of the deceased was found in tits and bits along Yamdi Khola Dobhan, Nadipur, Kaseri, Ramghat, Bharat Pokhari and ShardiKhola areas. Police has suspected body parts recovered in Shardikhola were of some foreigner. Along with dead bodies, police has recovered four legs and two hands detached completely from their bodies. Of the deceased, 8 are males and 5 females.
The rescue team has been able to rescue five persons from the floods. The rescued have been identified as Mohan Tamrakar, his daughters Mala Tamrakar, Tara Gurung, Pratikshya Gurung and another Santosh Gurung. All of them are undergoing treatment at the Mannipal Hospital, except Gurung who is admitted at Western Regional Hospital, and are reported to be out of danger.
An investigation team comprising of the Nepal Army, Police and Chief District officer Chetnath Adhikari, concluded that a lake was formed in the river some three days ago due to an avalanche in upper Himalayan range. The lake busted when it could not hold the weight of the water, ice and rocks and triggered the floods claimed DIG Bhandari.
Kharapani area was the worst affected due to the floods. A hot-spot for religious and outing tourism, the area was covered by tourist for enjoying picnic and to enjoy its hot water ponds on Saturday also when the flood came unannounced.
Witnesses claimed that the area was filled by internal and foreign tourists on Saturday also when the floods swept the area. The floods also swept away three trucks and two tractors that were parked on the bank to supply sand.
Padam Bahadur Gurung, a resident of Machhapuchre VDC, narrated that the people who were not able to run for the shores were swept away by the floods, which had come making grunting sound.
Pokhara residents were terrified with the floods that reached the city area around 11 am in the morning and dominated the river till 3 in the evening.
Most of them fixed their gaze on the river throughout the day while some managed to extract fishes and woods from the river.