Rescuers pull out 6 bodies after landslide hits north India

Officials carry out rescue work after the landslide in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh on Sunday morning

Officials carry out rescue work after the landslide in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh on Sunday morning

Teams of the NDRF, the Army and the police rushed to the spot on Sunday and heavy earth-moving machinery was deployed at the gorge where the two buses lay buried under a heap of debris.

Initial reports claimed several vehicles, including a bus is feared trapped in the debris on NH 154 at Kotrupi village of Padhar in the district. "One of the buses is buried under almost 15 metres (50 feet) of mud".

Eyewitnesses disclosed that about 250 meters of the highway had been buried in the landslide as an entire hilled caved in. The local people are also helping.

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According to the news agency india Press Trust of India, 30 people have been killed in the disaster, while other sources report a balance even higher.

So far, five persons have been rescued and admitted to Zonal Hospital in Mandi town. Rescue operations are said to be underway. The landslide swept away the road and the buses for nearly 800 meters into a gorge. Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal also visited the spot. He directed the administration to assess the loss of life and property for early reimbursement of the compensation.

Mr Sharma said he did not hold out much hope of any survivors.

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The state government has announced an ex gratia of Rs 5 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoles the deaths that occurred due to a landslide in Himachal Pradesh's Mandi district. He assured them of all possible assistance in this hour of distress.

Another 10 people are missing after the landslide swept away cars, vans and buses in Himachal Pradesh.

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"I pray for the quick recovery of those injured in Mandi district, Himachal Pradesh", he added.

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