The next two days are very crucial in terms of rescuing the maximum number of pilgrims and tourists stranded in rain-hit Uttarakhand as heavy showers may come anytime, a senior official on Friday said.
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Inspector General Sandeep Rai Rathore told reporters in Delhi that June 22 and 23 are "key dates" and all the agencies are maximising their efforts to carry out the majority of relief and rescue work during this time.
"We know that rains may come anytime and the Meteorological department has also predicted rains in the near future. So we are geared up for that," Mr Rathore said.
NDRF has deployed 13 teams, comprising 1,000 people, in the state to carry out rescue operations alongside ITBP and Army contingents.
The officer also said his men are undertaking some "daring" operations to help those who are displaced and lost.
"Our Assistant Commandant Rajesh Yadav jumped from the helicopter in the Jangalchetti area to help create a helipad for landing of choppers so that people can be rescued.
"Our DIG J K S Rawat has reached Rambada near Kedarnath leading the first team of rescuers in the area," the IG said.
Mr Rathore said close to 2,500 people were rescued from the Gaurigaon area by NDRF while his boys were still helping clear Kedarnath temple area of people who are stranded.