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2 killed, 1 feared trapped after being hit by shooting stones in India's Uttarakhand

(Xinhua)    16:11, August 24, 2020

NEW DELHI, Aug. 24 (Xinhua) -- At least two people were killed and one was feared trapped Monday after being hit by shooting stones in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand, officials said.

The shooting stones drifted on the Rishikesh-Badrinath highway in Pauri Garhwal district, about 192 km east of Dehradun, the capital city of Uttarakhand.

"Early today shooting stones hit two people here, killing them on spot," an official in Pauri Garhwal said. "Another person is feared trapped under the boulders near the Kaudiyala area."

Following the incident, authorities rushed State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) personnel to carry out rescue efforts.

On Sunday night the Badrinath stretch of highway in the Chamoli district was blocked due to a landslide. The efforts to clear the debris were underway until last reports poured in.

A video aired on television channels showed a group of people running away from the spot where a large amount of debris was seen falling from the adjacent cliff on the highway.

Officials said the Rishikesh-Badrinath highway has been blocked at several points as rains triggered landslides and drifting rocks from the hillocks close to the road.

Reports said more than 100 roads, including four national highways, are still blocked owing to heavy rain in several parts of the state. Authorities have pressed in over 200 earthmovers and heavy machinery to clear the roads and ensure free movement of traffic.

Meanwhile, India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall in the state between Aug. 25 and Aug. 28.

The ongoing monsoon season in India is at its peak. The downpour accompanied with it has triggered floods in several Indian states.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Shi Xi, Bianji)

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