For 15-year-old Karol Bagh resident Dinesh Sachdeva, his first pilgrimage to Hemkunth Sahib with his family turned into a nightmare on June 14 when he got stranded after a bridge collapsed, trapping the family.
At the Jolly Grant Airport of Dehradun, Dinesh looked dazed from the ordeal he had faced during the past one week. This was accompanied by the trauma of leaving his parents behind as the helicopter that rescued him had only one space left for a survivor and he was chosen.
Dinesh was accompanied by a family from Delhi’s Vishnu Garden, who were also stuck near Hemkunth Sahib.
“We stayed at the spot for five days without any food, water or power,” said Manpreet, one of the survivors. “My nine-year-old daughter Taranpreet fell ill and has been constantly vomiting. We have walked through hilly forests for days before being finally rescued,” she said.
On Tuesday, the survivors heaved a sigh of relief as they boarded a flight to Delhi with eight other family members.While survivors belonging to Delhi are slowly being rescued, there are many who are still missing. Relatives of these survivors have camped near the Joint Command Centre at the airport. “Three of my cousins had gone to visit Badrinath but there is still no sign of them,” said Mukesh Kumar, a Delhi resident.