7 killed as cloudburst hits village in J-K's Kishtwar

A search and rescue operation is under way to locate over 14 people who are still missing from the scene of the cloudburst at Honzar village in Dacchan tehsil

7 killed as cloudburst hits village in J-K's Kishtwar

Army, police and State Disaster Response Force during a search and rescue operation after a cloudburst at Honjar village in Kishtwar district on July 28, 2021. PTI

Jammu, July 28

A cloudburst hit a remote village in Jammu and Kashmir's Kishtwar district early on Wednesday, leaving seven people dead and 17 others injured, officials said.

Six houses and a ration depot situated on the banks of a stream besides a bridge were damaged in the cloudburst which triggered flash floods in the area around 4.30 am.

A search and rescue operation by police, Army and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) is under way to locate over 14 people who are still missing from the scene of the cloudburst at Honzar village in Dacchan tehsil, the officials said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the Centre is closely monitoring the situation in Kishtwar.

All possible assistance is being provided to the affected areas, he said, wishing for everyone's safety and well-being.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke to Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha and DGP Dilbagh Singh and took stock of the situation arising due to the cloudburst.

"Seven bodies were recovered from the cloudburst-hit village, while 17 people were rescued in an injured condition so far,” a police official told PTI.

He said efforts are on to locate 14 missing people.

Condition of five of the rescued persons was reported to be critical, the official said.

Earlier, District Development Commissioner, Kishtwar, Ashok Kumar Sharma, said a massive rescue operation is under way as a number of persons are still missing.

Director General of Police-cum-Commandant General Home Guard, Civil Defence and SDRF, VK Singh, said two women are among the seven people killed in the cloudburst.

“One of our SDRF teams from Kishtwar reached the affected village and two more teams are on their way from Doda and Udhampur districts. Two more SDRF teams are waiting for the weather to improve to get airlifted from Jammu and Srinagar to the scene and join the rescue mission,” Singh said, adding that an NDRF team from Ludhiana in Punjab is also on the way to Kishtwar.

“Inclement weather is hampering the rescue operation as our teams are waiting at the airports. The village is a three-hour journey on foot from the last road connectivity,” he said.

The officials said floods had also been reported from Machail, Paddar and Bunjwah in the district.

The district development commissioner, Kishtwar, said two cloudbursts struck remote Lambard area overnight but there was no report of any loss of life. PTI

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