Kedarnath, Uttarakhand – 2013 flash floods
The Kedarnath valley, along with and other parts of the state of Uttarakhand, was hit with unprecedented flash floods on 16 and 17June 2013 almost after 80 years. The temple itself suffered some damage but was still standing. However a portion of the temple complex was washed away, and the Kedarnath town was nearly destroyed in the deluge along with hundreds of devotees.
The Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna on 19th June 2013 announced that the Kedarnath shrine will remain closed for a year for clearing the debris around the shrine.the death count is assumed to be thousands as the the conditions in kedar valley are very adverse.
Here, I would like to show you photos of Kedarnath, Uttarakhand as per Google’s Earth images of that region.
Kedarnath land is actually situated on a river bed of Mandakini river.
1. Mountain view from Kedarnath Temple
2. Kedarnath Temple Valley
Kedarnath shrine was under snow for 400 years
Scientists claim that Kedarnath temple was under snow for almost 400 years and say that most of the people are unaware of this fact. According to scientists of Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Dehradun, Kedarnath temple survived being buried under the snow for almost 400 years and so they are not surprised that the shrine did not suffer much damage during the massive floods on June 15-16 in the region.
Theories regarding the construction of the Kedarnath temple:
1. Some say that it was built by Raja Bhoj of Malwa, who reigned between 1076 and 1099 AD.
2. Some believe that it was the Pandavas who built a temple behind the Kedarnath in the Hindu Dwapar era.
3. Popular belief is that it was built by Adi Shankaracharya in the 8th century. That proves the fact because the LIttle Ice Age is considered to have taken place between 1300-1900 AD when the temple became a part of the glacier.
3. View of Kedarnath Temple Valley & Mountains
4. Path of flash flood reaching to Kedarnath Temple Valley
Above pictures of Kedarnath, Uttarakhand, help us to understand what had happened on 16 and 17June 2013. We wish health & peace to everyone.
Photos: Kedarnath temple before and after the Uttarakhand floods
Check above height of debris, rocks, mud infront of Kedarnath Temple !
Authorities were so concerned about not leaving behind a single survivor in the inaccessible areas of Kedarnath valley that on Sunday, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) flew three UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) – Netra – through the day over the hills and jungles abutting the valley even as its personnel along with those of ITBP and Army combed the valley to ensure complete evacuation.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Monday reached Uttarakhand to survey the destruction caused by floods amid indications that he may visit the shrines of Kedarnath and Badrinath before returning to New Delhi.
Search and rescue operations end in Kedarnath – No more survivors have been found and defence and paramilitary personnel are now wrapping up their mission. Rain and fog delayed rescue operations on Tuesday in Uttarakhand where the death toll in the calamity rose to 807 with 127 more bodies recovered from Kedarnath even as security forces began the process of cremating corpses in the shrine premises.
A helicopter helping victims of devastating floods in northern India crashed near a pilgrimage site, killing 19 people on board, as fresh rains hampered the bid to rescue thousands still stranded. The helicopter, which crashed in the afternoon was on a medical mission near the pilgrimage site of Gaurikund, air force officials said. “The 19 people on board including five crew members sustained fatal injuries,” said a statement.
Six senior local doctors, part of the first medical team that left for Kedarnath on June 19, have returned shocked by the magnitude of human suffering and the unbelievable lack of government preparedness in the face of such a crisis. Dr Harish Kohli, an orthopedic, was airlifted to Guptkashi with the five others after tragedy struck Uttarakhand on June 15. “There was no way we could reach the epicenter of the devastation and we set up camp there itself,” he says, back in his hospital. “What we saw was staggering.” Of the 600 they attended to, the doctors say almost 500 were dehydrated , stressed and starving. The rest either had head injuries or shattered bones. Kohli says many came with their wounded flesh rotting. The doctor is afraid there may be a pandemic triggered by the stink and the polluted water.
Lord Kedarnath moved to Ukhimath – The procession idol has been brought to Ukki Mutt through Gupta Kashi. The throne of the deity is situated in Ukki Mutt and prayers will be offered there, breaking from tradition, owing to the natural disaster.
Ukhimath is a pilgrimage site in Rudraprayag district, Uttarakhand, India. During the winters, the idols from Kedarnath temple, Tungnath and Madhyamaheshwar are brought to Ukhimath and worshipped there for six months.
The Uttarakhand government announced a special economic package for Kedarnath and Govindghat, two of the worst-affected regions in the recent floods in Uttarakhand. “Rambara and other areas in Kedarnath, as well as Govindghat in Badrinath, were the worst-affected and economic losses of small shopkeepers and businessmen have been enormous. We are announcing a special economic package for the victims in Kedarnath and Govindghat. Similarly, all locals in Kedarnath and Govindghat, who have suffered, will be suitably compensated as a special gesture by the state,” said Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna.
Mass cremation of bodies begins in Kedarnath – In the temple town of Kedarnath, cut off from the rest of Uttarakhand after flash floods devastated the state nearly two weeks ago, the grim task of performing a mass cremation for those who died finally began.
Thailand on Thursday extended financial assistance of $100,000 towards India’s flood relief and rehabilitation.
With the Kedarnath temple premises in Uttarakhand cleared of all dead bodies, shrine authorities are preparing to clean the area and conduct sanctification process, hoping to resume formal pujas after about two weeks.
Govt eyes mammoth airlift of excavators to Kedarnath – Government is planning to airlift excavators to flood-ravaged Uttarakhand regions for clearing boulders and debris accumulated in Kedarnath and to try and uncover dead bodies. With a large number of people still missing, and their bodies feared trapped under layers of debris and slush in the flood-hit state, the focus now will be on finding them, says Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde.
Routine prayer in Kedarnath shrine to start soon after desilting the temple area – Ganesh Godiyal, chairman of BKTC, said, “We were to dispatch the team for Kedarnath on Friday, but due to bad weather the team failed to move from Ukhimath. As there is no road connectivity for Gaurikund now, so the temple committee staff will be sent by chopper.”
Kedarnath temple, ‘Char dham’ renovation to receive Rs.195 crore aid from Govt – A Rs.195 crore-package was announced by the Indian government on Friday for reconstruction of the ‘Char Dham’ pilgrimage circuit, which was badly affected by the north Indian state Uttarakhand rain disaster. Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi said the fund will be spent for renovation and reconstruction of the sacred pilgrimage sites of Kedarnath, Badrinath, Gangotri and Yamunotri, and its surrounding areas and the roads connecting it.
ASI to assess Kedarnath damage – A five-member team from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) will be visiting the Kedarnath temple in Uttarakhand on Sunday to assess the extent of damage caused by the floods last week. The temple is believed to have been in existence for more than 1000 years and its current structure was built about 500 years ago. Though it is not an ASI-protected site, this initiative follows the Uttarakhand government’s request to the ministry of culture to rope in the ASI’s expertise.
A new Kedarnath will come up from the rubble scientifically – Kedarnath, the temple town that has been devastated by the floods in Uttarakhand, will now be rebuilt using scientific and modern technologies. “A new Kedarnath will come up from the rubble of the devastated town,” said Uttarakhand CM Vijay Bahguna . In an exclusive conversation with TOI, Bahuguna shared his plans for a new temple-town that won’t be cluttered around the shrine and will be built using scientific and modern technologies. “We will take expert advice as and when we start the work for re-building Kedarnath ,” he added.
Photographs of Kedarnath from 1882 – 1883
The following collection of photographs were taken between 1882 and 1883 and are in the archives of the Geological Survey of India. They provide a view of the ancient Kedarnath Temple before it became a tourist attraction, when it was a lone, remote temple, only visited by a few sadhus:
Kedarnath Temple & Kedarnath Valley – 1883 to 2013
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna on Sunday turned down offers from his Gujarat counterpart Narendra Modi and others for reconstruction of the Kedarnath temple, saying it will be done by his government and the temple committee. However, he said anyone was welcome to contribute funds for the reconstruction of the 8th century shrine that withstood the ravage of the cloudbursts and floods that swept away its neighbourhood and much of the town.
Prayers at the Kedarnath shrine will resume on September 11, 2013, Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna today said. Prayers will take place between 7 and 11 am and will continue till the portals of the temple close on Diwali, he said.Although prayers are beginning, a decision on resuming pilgrimage to the Himalayan shrine will be taken only after a review meeting on September 30, Bahuguna told reporters at the Secretariat here after presiding over a meeting to review preparations for the worship.
Prayers at the calamity-hit Kedarnath shrine of Uttarakhand resumed this morning, almost three months after flash floods left hundreds of people dead in the state. The prayers started in the presence of a 24-member team of priests and temple committee officials, after a sanctification and atonement ceremony.
The uncertainty over the number of people gone missing in Uttarakhand’s catastrophic flashfloods has at last come to an end with the state government releasing a final list of 4,120 persons, including 92 foreign nationals who went traceless after the calamity.
Underlining the need to learn the right lessons from the Uttarakhand tragedy, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the country has to equip itself in a better way to prevent disasters and check their fall out. Dr. Singh said this while, addressing the ninth formation day of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) in New Delhi.
The religious trip to Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines opened for pilgrims on Saturday, almost four months after flash floods and heavy rains led to the halt of the annual “Char Dham Yatra” in Uttarakhand. In the wake of the massive destruction, vehicles will be stopped at Soneprayag on the Kedarnath route and pilgrims will have to trek 24 km to reach the Kedarnath temple. Small vehicles will, however, be allowed right up to the Badrinath shrine.
If you like you can read this article in hindi by google translation — uttarakhand tragedy / kedarnath apda / uttarakhand aapda in hindi
On June 16-17 last year, rains wreaked havoc, with flash floods in many rivers of Uttarakhand; landslips engulfing property and lives, especially in Kedarnath Valley. On June 17, the Mandakini swept through Kedarnath. Other rivers, including the Alaknanda, Pindar, Bhagirathi and Kali, got flash flooded and the deluge of took away the lives of 169 people and rendered 4,021 people missing.
A year on, the State government is focussing on Kedarnath restoration efforts. However, lack of similar attention can be witnessed in other disaster-hit areas in Rudraprayag, Chamoli, Bageshwar, Pithoragarh, and Uttarkashi districts.
Most of the roads that were washed away in the disaster are far from being relaid and whatever work the Indian Army’s Central Command did in the aftermath of the floods has not been completed at many places. Many villages marooned in the floods still seek financial help and rue that their ration cards and other papers are yet to be made available.
At many places, schools continue to function in the open. The change of guard in Uttarakhand from Vijay Bahuguna to Harish Rawat has also taken its toll on rehabilitation.
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Dr. Anil SinghalKedarnath, Uttarakhand – 2013 flash floods
by Dr. Anil Singhal ( Author at Spirit India )
Posted on June 22nd, 2013 at 3:50 pm.
Last updated on August 7th, 2014 at 10:51 pm.
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