Thursday, July 13, 2000,
Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

8 die in Kinnaur landslip
Solding bridge washed away
Tribune News Service

SHIMLA, July 12 — At least eight persons, including two policemen, were killed when a massive landslide knocked down Solding bridge in Kinnaur district early today.

The exact number of casualties was not known, but seven bodies had so far been recovered. A police constable, Raj Man Singh, who went to rescue people, was missing.

Vinod Kumar, another constable, who was temporarily sent on guard duty at bridge from Reckong-Peo about a week ago, lost his life as he got buried in the landslide.

With this, vehicular traffic on the Hindustan-Tibet highway has come to standstill. The road was badly damaged last month due to a flash flood and had recently been repaired.

The bodies recovered so far were of Vinod Kumar, Prem Bahadur, Sant Ram, Kishen Singh, Gajendera Singh, Roop Lal and Dinesh Kumar. Barring Vinod Kumar, others were travelling in a mini-truck which fell into the river as it had reached mid-way of the bridge when it collapsed due to the landslide. The exact number of persons travelling in the vehicle was not known.

The main bridge was washed away in the last month’s flood in the area and the old suspension bridge was being used for the movement of vehicular traffic. Reports said heavy boulders started falling on the suspension bridge at about 2am and the iron ropes broke. In the meanwhile a massive landslide washed away the bridge.

Even the suspension bridge was closed to heavy vehicles for the past three days as one of its ropes had got damaged when a boulder fell on it.

Many places on the highway witnessed landslides because of heavy rain yesterday. The highway was also closed at Neogalsari due to debris.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr J.P. Singh, has rushed to the spot. The SP, Mr Ajay Yadav, who was returning to the district headquarter of Rekong-Peo after attending a meeting here, was held up Jeori because of the landslides.

The government has asked the Deepak project of the Border Roads Organisation to construct a bailey bridge at Solding to restore traffic on the highway.

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