The Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi district is a part of the Indian government’s project Char Dham Pariyojana to improve connectivity to four pilgrimage sites (Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath) in the Uttarakhand state. Not only that, they will also work as feeder roads to the border and will be helpful for faster movement of soldiers and heavy weaponry in case of any requirement. In short, it is also an important infrastructure to counter any national security threat. The Silkyara tunnel incident should be a learning curve for our agencies involved in road construction in challenging mountain areas, and will have to take the necessary precautions to prevent such incidents in the future.
On November 12, 2023, 41 construction workers were trapped inside the tunnel, near Silkyara in Uttarakhand. After huge and collective efforts by NDRF, NDMA, NHIDCL, BRO, military, government, international tunnelling experts and all other rescue teams, all 41 trapped workers in the Silkyara tunnel, Uttarkashi were finally rescued on November 28, 2023, after 17 days. Special kudos go to rat-hole miners for drilling and doing this mammoth dangerous task manually.
“Even when machines fail, men’s efforts prevail.”
In this technology era, we are becoming more & more machine-dependent. But, we shouldn’t have to forget that sometimes machine failure may happen. We have to believe in ourselves in tough conditions. Machines are being upgraded every day, and so we also have to ourselves. A college degree is a good thing, but knowledge and technical skills are more important.