PM Narendra Modi speaks with rescued Uttarkashi workers, lauds their ‘courage’; Watch

Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked to the 41 workers rescued from the Uttarakhand Silkyara tunnel on Tuesday, following 17 days of tireless efforts by the Centre, state governments and other agencies. Congratulating them on their battle, Prime Minister Modi said 17 days is a long time and it was admirable that the workers did not give up hope. “We have the blessings of Kedarnath, Badrinath. Had something untoward happened, I can’t describe how we could have taken that. You all have shown exemplary bravery,” PM Modi said.

PM added, “You had each other’s back throughout the crisis. At times like this, it is not rare to get into a little tu tu-main main. This happens even in a railway compartment. But you all have remained united.”

A worker told PM Modi that they were not scared down there inside the entrapment. “We are all from different states but we stayed together like brothers. We used to eat together. After dinner, we used to walk inside the 2.5 km tunnel. In the morning, we used to do yoga because we were doing nothing else inside there,” the worker said.

The 17-day operation to rescue 41 people trapped inside an under-construction tunnel drew international attention as international tunnelling expert Arnold Dix was brought in for the operation. A heavy-duty auger equipment made in the United States was deployed, but it failed many times. Rat-hole miners were then deployed and after 24 hours of work, the 41 men were rescued.

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