All 41 workers trapped for 17 days in a tunnel under construction in the Indian state of Uttarakhand have been taken out and transferred to hospital. The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, in a post on the social network X welcomed the rescue: a success "that excites everyone". The prime minister wished "good health" to the survivors, paying tribute to them for the courage and patience shown, and thanked the rescuers for the determination with which they acted and for the "extraordinary example of humanity" offered. The President of the Republic, Droupadi Murmu, also published a message of happiness for the rescued and of gratitude for the team of experts involved in the rescue and rescue operations. The operations were coordinated by the National Disaster Management Authority (Ndma) and carried out by the National Disaster Response Force (Ndrf), by the State Disaster Response Force (Sdrf) and by other agencies. Five companies – National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (Nhidcl), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (NGO), Sjvn, Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (Rvnl) and Thdc India Limited – carried out the necessary horizontal and vertical drilling to reach the stranded workers.
In the tunnel under construction from Silkyara Bend to Barkot a partial collapse occurred on November 12, stranding workers in an area 8,5 meters high and two kilometers long. Water, food and medicines were sent through the dug pipes. Furthermore, a video link has been activated. Meanwhile, the Indian press also reports rumors about the work of the commission of inquiry, established by the central government to investigate the accident. Preliminary findings revealed several shortcomings. In particular, the structure, under construction on a geological fault, did not have an emergency exit: the escape routes required by the guidelines for tunnels exceeding 1,5 kilometers in length had not been built. The Uttarakhand case prompted New Delhi to order checks on 29 other tunnels under construction across the country, checks entrusted to the National Highways Authority of India (Nhai).