Two survivors were pulled from the rubble yesterday as it emerged a baby miraculously survived being buried under tonnes of concrete.
Rescuers toiling amid the rubble left by Nepal’s earthquake pulled a boy and a woman to safety in separate rescues.
The 15-year-old had been trapped for five days and his rescue secured a rare moment of joy for a country struggling to cope with the disaster.
Hours later, rescuers pulled up to safety a woman, a kitchen worker in her 30s, in another hotel just streets away. She was injured but conscious and talking.
Meanwhile, it emerged that 22 hours after the earthquake, a four-month-old boy was rescued from the rubble.
The infant, named Sonit Awal, was buried under the rubble of his family’s house in Bhaktapur, near Kathmandu, when it collapsed.
According to a story in local newspaper Kathmandu Today, rescuers tried until midnight to extract the baby from bricks and other debris that had fallen on him during the quake, but were unsuccessful. The next morning, after the child’s father said he heard the baby crying throughout the night, the rescue team returned, and by 10am, it finally pulled the child to safety.
Sonit Awal was alive and, the paper reported, found free of injuries after a visit to Bhaktapur hospital.
Officials said the chances of finding more survivors were fading as the death toll neared 6,000. However, Nepal’s Armed Police Force managed to save 15-year-old Pema Lama from the collapsed ruins of Kathmandu’s Hilton Hotel.
While rescuers were out in the capital despite heavy morning rain, helicopters could not fly to the worst-hit areas in the countryside of the Himalayan nation.
Many people have been sleeping in the open since Saturday’s quake. According to the UN, 600,000 houses have been destroyed or damaged.
It said 8m people have been affected, with at least 2m in need of tents, water, food, and medicines over the next three months.
An official from Nepal’s home ministry said that the number of confirmed deaths from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake had risen to 5,844 by last night, and almost 11,200 were injured.
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