New Delhi, November 30: Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Thursday cited remarks by rat-hole mining experts, who played a key role in the rescue of 41 workers trapped in Uttarakhand's Silkyara tunnel, to underscore that the country is built on love.

All the 41 workers were rescued on Tuesday evening after 17 days of a multi-agency operation conducted by central and state governments. A 12-member team of rat-hole mining technique experts were called on Sunday to do the drilling after an American auger machine came across hurdles while clearing the rubble. What Is Rat-Hole Mining? Who Are Rat-Hole Miners? Know All About Process of Digging Narrow Tunnels That Came in Handy in Rescue of 41 Trapped Workers From Collapsed Silkyara Tunnel.

In a post on X in Hindi, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi said, "When big auger machines became ineffective in trying to rescue the labourer brothers trapped in the Silkyara tunnel of Uttarkashi, an indigenous technique of manual digging, which is called rat-hole mining, had to be implemented."

A total of 12 rat-hole miners risked their lives and completed the rescue operation in just 24 hours, she said.

"One of them, Mohammad Irshad, has prayed for everyone that love is preserved in the country and humans are loved as humans. When Nasir Hussain, the second-rat hole miner, saw the first worker among those trapped on the other side of the collapsed tunnel, he immediately went near him and hugged him. This is love. Our country is built on this love. Jai Hind," Priyanka Gandhi said. Uttarakhand Tunnel Rescue Operation Update: First Worker Among 41 People Trapped Inside Silkyari Tunnel Successfully Rescued (Watch Video).

The Communist Party of India (Marxist), in a post on X, hailed the rat-hole mining team and highlighted the diversity among them. "Proud of our working class heroes. Lesson for communal bigots -- unity not communal division bedrock of success," the CPI(M) said.