28 Nov 2023

Uttarakhand Tunnel Rescue: Celebrations erupt as ordeal of 41 trapped workers finally ends

Uttarakhand Tunnel Rescue: The 17-day long ordeal involving the 41 workers trapped in the Silkyara tunnel of Uttarakhand finally ended on Tuesday.

The first of the 41 workers was brought out of the tunnel by rescuers at 7:50 pm. The joy of getting a new lease of life could be clearly seen on the face of the workers.

All 41 laborers trapped in Silkyara-Dandalgaon Tunnel of Uttarakhand since November 12 have been rescued. The first laborer was taken out at 7.50 pm. He was sent to the hospital by ambulance. The rest will also be taken out soon.

Rescue team member Harpal Singh said that all the workers are in good health.

Naseem, a manual driller of rat snappers company Navyug, said – All the workers are healthy. I took a selfie with them. He told that when the last stone was removed, everyone cheered.

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami spoke to the workers who were rescued. Union Minister VK Singh was also with him.

'The respect trapped workers have given us, I can't forget my whole life'


Munna Qureshi, a rat miner from Delhi, was the first one to reach to the other side.


“I removed the last rock,” he said later. “I could see them. Then I went to the other side. They hugged us, lifted us. And thanked us for taking us out."


"We worked continuously in the last 24 hours. I can't express my happiness. I have done it for my country. The respect they (trapped workers) have given us, I can't forget my whole life,” Munna told media.

Prior to the first evacuation, the personnel from the SDRF and NDRF had entered the tunnel with stretchers. Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami and Union minister VK Singh were present to welcome the workers.


Celebrations erupted as locals distributed sweets outside Silkyara tunnel as trapped workers were rescued from the tunnel.

Workers will be taken to Chinyalisour


After the rescue, the workers will be taken to Chinyalisour, 30-35 KM away. There a 41 bed special hospital has been built. The road from the tunnel to Chinyalisour has been declared a green corridor, so that the ambulance carrying the workers to the hospital after the rescue reaches quickly. It is a distance of about 30 to 35 kilometers. It will take about 40 minutes to cover it.

A portion of the tunnel had caved in on November 12, with the debris falling in the 60-metre stretch on the Silkyara side of the tunnel, thereby trapping 41 laborers inside the under-construction structure.

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