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No contact with 25 tourists from Maharashtra in Nepal

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  27 April 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Mumbai, April 26: Indian authorities have not been able to establish contact with at least 25 tourists from Maharashtra whose whereabouts remain unknown in an earthquake-ravaged Nepal, an official said here on Sunday. “We have contacted more than 1,000 people from the state so far, including tourists and mountaineers, who are safe. However, we are not able to connect with another 25 people who were visiting Nepal when the quake struck Saturday,” an official from the Chief Minister’s Office told IANS. Their telephone numbers have been collected from the various big and small private tour companies and passed on to the Maharashtra Control Room in Mumbai and the Maharashtra Sadan in New Delhi, the official said requesting he not be identified.

Spelling relief for anxious families, around 500 people from the state have also returned either in New Delhi or other locations by relief flights which started operating between India-Nepal since late Saturday. Additiol Resident Commissioner Samir Sahai of Maharashtra Sadan in New Delhi said an estimated 1,000 tourists and mountaineers from the state are reported stranded in Nepal, but all are safe. The Control Room in Maharashtra Sadan is coorditing the relief efforts on behalf of the state government which has been contacted by nearly 300 stranded people so far.

“In turn, they informed us that they have established contact with all people known to them, or their families, groups or tourist charters. Though we cannot provide the exact figures, roughly 800-1,000 people from Maharashtra could be present there and all are safe,” Sahai told IANS. “Flights from Nepal carrying Indians have started arriving and the ministry of exterl affairs plans to airlift around 2,000 today (Sunday). The number of people from Maharashtra will be known later,” Sahai added. A Mumbai team of 15 mountaineers, who had gone for an expedition to Mt Anpur, the 10th highest peak in the world standing at 26,545 feet, are reported to be safe and have reached Kathmandu.

“They are all senior sales tax officers, including three joint commissioners and 12 deputy commissioners. We are grateful to Chief Minister Devendra Fadvis for helping them in this crisis,” a group official said. According to Maharashtra Control Room in Mumbai, around 70 tourists from Mumbai, 74 from shik, 25 from Pune, and four from Satara have got in touch with authorities here. District-wise disaster magement cells have also started functioning and are attempting to help out the quake-hit victims who may be stranded in Nepal.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said his team in Nepal is coorditing with the authorities there for providing medical help, relief material and other assistance to the victims, while its centres have been converted into rescue shelters.

Republican Party of India spokesperson Mayur Borkar said here that his party would send a truckload of food, water and clothes for the victims, and urged Mumbaikars to dote whatever they can. (IANS)

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