Find those missing in Uttarakhand
The unending tragedy in Uttarakhand seems to have taken on another dimension as the time has come for stocktaking and reckoning for the victims of the devastation. As if the sheer horror and scale of the disaster were not enough, the latest figures released by the National Disaster Management Authority and some NGOs active in the relief operations put the number of those missing after the catastrophe struck the Himalayan state at a staggering 11,000, while the Uttarakhand government puts the figure at about 5,500. This is preposterous, to say the least, especially after the three-week-long relief operations that are in fact still going on. However, despite the efforts, though inadequate of the state, and various other bodies who lent their services or helped with funds during the rescue work, the unimaginably high numbers of those unaccounted for is a setback for the survivors and the families that have been affected. While the spotlight has been on the stranded pilgrims, who were caught in the environmental quagmire en route to the holy shrines of Kedarnath, Badrinath among others, the plight of the local residents of Uttarakhand has not been given enough attention and they have been left out from the media discussions or state’s post-calamity telegenic munificence. It is the utmost duty of the governments, both at the state and central levels, to step up their rescue operations and find the missing people of the Uttarakhand disaster at the earliest.