New Delhi: As search continues in Himachal Pradesh for the missing engineering students, who drowned in the Beas River in Mandi district last evening, Congress said that his party vice-president Rahul Gandhi was keeping a tab on the situation.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi too expressed deep anguish and shock over the tragedy in Himachal Pradesh in which 24 students were washed away in river Beas.
"In this moment of grief, my heart goes out to the parents and my prayers are with the families," Gandhi said in a message. Gandhi has been in constant touch with the Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh who has been monitoring relief, rescue and search operations.
She has expressed the hope that if the tragedy occurred due to negligence of any govt/private agency, the guilty should be brought to book at the earliest.
Maken, who is the AICC Communication Department in-charge, said Rahul Gandhi has also asked Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh during a telephonic conversation to ensure speedy relief and rescue. “RahulG keeping tab on situation in HP. Spoke to CM Himachal to ensure speedy relief and rescue,” Maken wrote on his Twitter account.
Maken said that Rahul Gandhi does not want any guilty to be spared and urged the Chief Minister to ensure systems to avoid recurrence of any such accident. “RahulG said that guilty if any should not be spared. Asked CM to ensure systems to avoid recurrence,” Maken wrote. Meanwhile, the rescue workers recovered bodies of five students from Himachal Pradesh’s Beas River near Thalot on Manali-Kiratpur Highway, while the fate of 19 others, who were washed away on Sunday evening, is still not known, an official said. The toll in Sunday's accident has risen to five, Additional Deputy Commissioner Pankaj Rai said on Monday.
Rai said one of the bodies was recovered from Pandoh dam, whose floodgates were closed after the mishap. The dam is some 15 km downstream from the accident spot. The chances of survival of other students were bleak, officials added.