Sunday, June 16, 2024

U’Khand tunnel collapse: Naveen Patnaik meets rescued Odisha workers

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday met four of the five labourers rescued from inside the collapsed Silkyara tunnel in Uttarakhand, after their arrival in Bhubaneswar.

Meeting the rescued workers at his residence, Patnaik asked them about their health condition and also handed over cheques of Rs 2 lakh each as assistance.

After listening to their struggles for survival inside the tunnel, Patnaik described the workers as heros.

He also said that the way they won the battle for survival in the midst of adverse conditions is an inspiration for others. The labourers who met CM Patnaik are Raju Naik, Dhiren Naik and Biseswar Naik of Mayurbhanj, and Bhagaban Bhatra of Nabarangpur.

Their family members were also present at the residence of CM Patnaik.

Meanwhile, the labourer, Tapan Mandal of Bhadrak district who stayed back for some reason is also expected to return soon along with his family.

Labour Minister Sarada Prasad Nayak and other officials of the department along with the workers arrived at the Biju Patnaik International Airport here on Friday.

Following the instructions of CM Patnaik, Nayak along with family members of the labourers flew to Uttarkashi and were camping at the spot till the rescue of the workers. Speaking to media persons, Nayak said: “When we reached the spot and the relatives talked with the trapped labourers, they were surprised and elated that the Chief Minister had sent his relatives to the spot.”

He said that following the collapse of the tunnel on November 12, the CM immediately showed concern and sent labour department officials to the spot.

Nayak said CM asked him to go Uttarkashi along with the family members of the entrapped labourers on November 23.

The labourers said they were initially tense after the collapse of the tunnel. However, they survived on food items like, puffed rice, cashew nuts etc., for the first couple of days. Later, they received cooked food such as ‘khichdi’, dal, roti, etc.

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