Solan, June 20
Eleven people, including five women, were stranded for hours after a cable car was stuck mid-air at Parwanoo Timber Trail in Himachal Pradesh's Solan district, officials said on Monday. All of them were rescued after a six-hour-long operation, they said.
Later, a team from National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) also reached the spot, the officials said, adding the incident was reported around 11 am.
Parwanoo Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Pranav Chauhan told PTI that the cable car carrying the eleven tourists had stuck at a height of around 200-250 feet near a mountain peak.
“That is why much difficulty was not faced in rescuing the passengers by sending them to the ground, one at a time, after tying a rope around each of them. A rescue cable car was deployed to get the people out,” he added.
The DSP said that the maximum height of the 1.8km ropeway is about 1,000 metres.
Popularly known as timber trail, the Parwanoo ropeway is situated about 35 km from Chandigarh city on Chandigarh-Shimla road and it takes about eight minutes one way for the cable car to reach from one hill to another.
Chauhan said an FIR is being registered against the owner of the cable car run by Timber Trail Resorts. The FIR is being registered under sections 287 and 336 of Indian Penal Code on the statements of the rescued people, he said, adding that if required, more sections from other Acts might also be included in the FIR.
One of the rescued persons told the media that all 11 tourists were from Delhi.
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, who reached the spot after getting information about the incident, talked to the rescued tourists.
Later, speaking to the media, Thakur said Union Home Minister Amit Shah talked to him twice over phone and sent an NDRF team to the spot, while an air force helicopter was also put on standby.
To a query, the CM said that the incident would be probed to determine if there was any negligence on the part of the private company running the timber trail.
A tourist from Punjab, Anupam Bhagria, said that the safety of tourists using the timber trails should be ensured. Accountability should be fixed in such incidents, otherwise timber trails should be closed, she added.
A similar incident at the Timber Trail had occurred 20 years ago in which one person was killed. In October 1992, 10 of the 11 stuck people had been rescued in an operation by the Army and Air Force, while the cable car operator had died.
Nearly two months ago, 15 tourists were trapped mid-air on a ropeway at Trikut hills in Jharkhand's Deoghar district for around 40 hours. Twelve of them were rescued by Indian Air Force helicopters, while three people had died in the incident that took place on April 11.
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