| 27 February 2024, Tuesday |

Indian rescuers begin pulling out 41 men trapped in Himalayan tunnel

After drilling through the rubble of rock, concrete, and soil to reach them, Indian rescuers on Tuesday freed the first of 41 construction workers who had been imprisoned within a collapsed tunnel in the Himalayas for 17 days, according to officials.

After the tunnel collapsed early on November 12, rescuers broke through, and the guys were evacuated to safety more than six hours later.

A rescue official outside the 4.5 km (3 mile) tunnel in the northern state of Uttarakhand informed media, “The first one is out.”

Ambulances with their lights flashing lined up at the mouth of the tunnel to transport the workers to a hospital about 30 km away.

The men have been getting food, water, light, oxygen and medicines through a pipe but efforts to dig a tunnel to rescue them with high-powered drilling machines were frustrated by a series of snags.

The tunnel is part of the $1.5 billion Char Dham highway, one of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most ambitious projects, aimed at connecting four Hindu pilgrimage sites through an 890- km network of roads.

  • Reuters