A devastating tragedy struck northeastern India when a glacial lake in the Himalayan valley burst its banks, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. According to authorities, the disaster occurred on Wednesday, and since then, the death toll has risen to 56, with more than 100 people still missing.
Lake Lhonak, located near Kangchenjunga, the third-highest mountain in the world, overflowed its banks, sweeping away a valley in Sikkim and West Bengal. The floods swept away buildings, bridges, and telephone lines, making evacuation and communication operations difficult for thousands of isolated people.
Among the victims were seven Indian Army soldiers stationed in the region, where there is a significant military presence. The Indian Defense Ministry confirmed the loss of firearms and explosives from military camps due to flooding.
More than 2,400 people have been rescued, while 7,000 people have taken refuge in makeshift camps. The Himalayan region has been experiencing a worrying increase in glacial melting due to climate change. A recent report revealed that between 2011 and 2020, Himalayan glaciers melted 65% faster than in the previous decade, exacerbating the risk of extreme events like this outburst.
Authorities continue search and rescue operations, while the international community closely follows this tragedy, highlighting the urgency of addressing climate change to prevent future similar disasters in this vulnerable region.