The Indian army said that 23 troops were missing after a powerful flash flood caused by intense rainfall tore through a valley in the mountainous northeast Sikkim state.
According to international media reports, “Due to sudden cloud burst over Lhonak Lake in North Sikkim, a flash flood occurred in the Teesta River… 23 personnel have been reported missing and some vehicles are reported submerged under the slush,” Indian army said in a statement on Wednesday.
The remote area lies close to India’s border with Nepal, and Lhonak Lake lies at the base of a glacier in the snowy peaks that surround Kangchenjunga, the world’s third highest mountain.
Intermittent rain and thundershowers were hampering rescue operations in the area, reports quoted official as saying.
Flash floods are common during the monsoon season, which begins in June and normally withdraws from the Indian subcontinent by the end of September. By October the heaviest of the monsoon rains are usually over