Bhubaneswar: Four Odia workers, who were rescued from an under-construction tunnel in Uttarakhand after a 17-day-long struggle, reached their home state today.
The survivors arrived in Bhubaneswar by a special flight from New Delhi today.
Odisha Labour Minister Sarada Prasad Nayak and various labour organisations welcomed the Bravehearts after they came out of the Biju Patnaik International Airport in Bhubaneswar.
“I would like to thank Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and 5T Chairman VK Pandian who took prompt steps for the rescue of stranded Odia workers in Uttarakhand. The rescue operation was challenging indeed. Finally, the victims were rescued safely,” said Minister Sarada Nayak.
Total five workers from Odisha — Dhiren Nayak of Badakudar and Bisweswar Nayak of Jogibandh in Mayurbhanj, Raju Nayak of Kuldiha in Balasore, Bhagaban Bhotra of Nabarangpur, Tapan Mandal of Bhadrak district — among 41 others were trapped inside the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand when a portion of the tunnel collapsed on November 12.
They were rescued on November 28 through a gruelling operation that lasted for several weeks.
The labourers spent almost 17 days in the tunnel before they were rescued in a joint operation involving Indian Army, NDRF, SDRF and many other agencies and experts having expertise in handling such situation.
However, four workers except Tapan Mandal returned to the home state.
Reports said that Tapan stayed in Uttarakhand with one of his relatives following rescue.