All 41 Trapped India Workers Have Been Rescued

Rescuers pull men to safety after 17 days buried underground
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 28, 2023 9:03 AM CST
Updated Nov 28, 2023 10:07 AM CST
Rescuers Finally Reach Trapped Workers in India
People watch rescue operations at the site of an under-construction road tunnel that collapsed in Silkyara in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand, India, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023.   (AP Photo)
UPDATE Nov 28, 2023 10:07 AM CST

India's transportation minister says all 41 construction workers who were trapped in a collapsed mountain tunnel in the country's north for more than two weeks have been pulled out after rescuers reached them on Tuesday. Nitin Gadkari, the minister of road transport and highways, wrote on X that he was "completely relieved and happy" after all were rescued from the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi after an ordeal that lasted 17 days. "I am very happy that all the 41 trapped workers have come out and their lives have been saved," he said in a video message. The AP reports that Gadkari added that "this was a well-coordinated effort by multiple agencies, marking one of the most significant rescue operations in recent years."

Nov 28, 2023 9:03 AM CST

Rescuers in India on Tuesday reached 41 construction workers who were trapped in a collapsed mountain tunnel for over two weeks in the country's north and started pulling them out, a local news agency reported. One worker has been rescued so far, said the report by the Press Trust of India, per the AP. The laborers are being pulled out through a passageway made of welded pipes. The rescue mission has grabbed the country's attention for the past 17 days. The workers got trapped on Nov. 12, when a landslide caused a portion of the 2.8-mile tunnel they were building in Uttarakhand state to collapse about 650 feet from the entrance.

They survived on food and oxygen supplied through narrow steel pipes. "Soon all the laborer brothers will be taken out," Pushkar Singh Dhami, top official in Uttarakhand, had posted on the social media platform X earlier on Tuesday, when there were only a few feet remaining to be dug out. Kirti Panwar, a state government spokesperson, said about a dozen men had worked overnight to manually dig through rocks and debris, taking turns to drill using hand-held drilling tools and clearing out the muck in the final part of the digging phase. (More India stories.)

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