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Uttarakhand Glacier outburst

The Uttarakhand government has issued notification to declare 136 persons, who are still missing after the February 7 flash flood tragedy in the Chamoli district. The move is aimed at making it easier for the affected families to get compensation early.

The Uttarakhand government has begun the process to issue death certificates for the missing persons in the Chamoli tragedy. The notification followed a set of directives from the central government in this connection.

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The missing persons would be “presumed dead” following the notification issued on Monday. The agencies recovered 68 bodies in the post-tragedy search and rescue operations while 136 persons remained missing.

The Chamoli incident has been treated as an exception. Usually, people who go missing in a disaster are declared dead if they remain untraced for seven years. However, in the Chamoli disaster case, the government decided to invoke provisions of the Registration of Births and Deaths Act, 1969.

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This law allows the government to declare persons, who are missing, as dead before the stipulated seven-year-period. This is expected to expedite the process of giving compensation to the affected families.

The government has decided to issue death certificates for the missing persons under three categories. The first category is of the local persons belonging to the same district. The second category is of the persons, who were at the disaster site but belonged to other districts of Uttarakhand.

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The third category is of the tourists or the people from other states who went missing during the tragedy. A complaint could be lodged by the affected families within 30 days in each of the districts of Uttarakhand.