POKHARA, May 8: The death toll of Saturday´s Seti flood reached 26 with five more bodies recovered Tuesday. Around 600 security persons have been mobilized in search of the missing 43 persons.
District Police Office, Kaski, said 19 of the 26 recovered bodies have been identified and have been handed over to their concerned families for cremation. The seven unidentified bodies have been kept at the Western Region Hospital.
Two hundred fifteen Nepal Army (NA) soldiers, 190 Nepal Police personnel and 208 Armed Police Force (APF) personnel have been deployed in the search operation aided by excavators and bulldozers. Chief District Officer (CDO) Chet Nath Bhattarai said the security personnel along with technicians to operate the equipment have camped in the area for the search operation.
Chief of Kaski Police SP Shailsh Thapa said details about the human and material loss in the flashflood have not yet been ascertained and police are relying on the reports of missing filed by the relatives. “The local market, Tatopani springs and many laborers extracting sand and stones were swept away. We, therefore, don´t know exactly how many persons were there at the time of the flooding,” SP Thapa stated.
“The actual number of persons killed could be much higher,” he added. He said identification of the bodies has become difficult as many bodies are not intact.
Meanwhile, a 20-member team including officials from the District Administration Office and District Development Committee, and security personnel has been deployed to Sadal, Awang and Karuwa of Machhapuchchre Village Development Committee (VDC) to observe the plight of the villagers following complaints that government representatives have not reached to the victim families.