Mandi: The body of five of the 24 students, swept away on Sunday in a sudden surge of water released from a dam in Himachal Pradesh, were flown back to Hyderabad yesterday evening.
A plane carrying 22 survivors of the group also returned to Hyderabad on a special flight arranged by the Andhra Pradesh government.
Civil Aviation Minister Pusapati Ashok Gajapathi Raju arrived in Kullu on an Air India plane along with some family members of the missing students.
The families accompanying the Union minister stayed back in the hope that the bodies of their kin may be recovered tomorrow when the search operation resumes.
So far, the bodies of four girls and a boy have been recovered while 19 students and one tour guide are still missing.
Meanwhile, the Larji project authorities have claimed that they followed the protocol and all three alarms were sounded before release of the water.
They said that the 55cm gate of the project was opened at 6.15 PM and the other 1.5mt gate was opened at 6.45 PM, which caused the flash flood.