Avalanche toll reaches 17

9 Civilians Rescued From Sonamarg


Srinagar, Feb 24: With the recovery of the body of one more victim from Gurez sector, the death toll in the avalanche that hit an Army camp at Dawar yesterday rose to 14.
With the recovery of the body of a missing soldier from Dawar, the total death toll in the twin avalanches that hit the valley Thursday has gone up to 17.
The Army assisted by police and locals recovered the body after extensive search operation using electronic detector, SDM Gurez Muhammad Ashraf told Greater Kashmir over phone from Gurez. He said the number of injured has reached eleven.
Gurez sector in Bandipora district alone accounted for 14 deaths. 13 personnel were rescued and an equal number of bodies recovered yesterday after the avalanche hit the workshop of 109 Infantry Brigade at Dawar on Wednesday, burying 29 soldiers under it.
While the body of one out of the three missing was found today, search was on for the other two, the officials said.
Three other army soldiers were killed in another avalanche that hit an army camp in Sonamarg area of Central Kashmir the same day.
The General Officer Commanding of Srinagar-based 15 Corps, Lt Gen SA Hasnain and Minister of State for Tourism, Nasir Aslam Wani Friday visited Dawar Friday and interacted with Army and civil officers.
Meanwhile, floral tributes were offered to the three soldiers who were killed in the Sonamarg avalanche.

Nine civilians trapped in avalanche-hit Sonamarg area of Kashmir for three days were today rescued by local authorities assisted by Army.
SP Ganderbal Shahid Meraj told Greater Kashmir that the SDA employees Syed Akbar Shah of Sumbal Kangan and Muhammad Rafiq of Ganiwan  Kangan  had taken shelter in a mud house at Shutkady village.
“Other seven persons putting up in the area were also rescued,” he said.
Col Simbha defence offcial at 3 sector RR said the army today rescued 9 civilians of village Shitkari, in search and rescue mission from the higher reaches of snow covered Sonamarg valley.
“Nine civilians have been rescued from snow-bound Sonamarg area this morning with the assistance of the Army,” Coordinator Natural Disaster Management Cell Aamir Ali said.
Ali said three government employees had started from Sonamarg, 85 kms from here, to Ganderbal by foot on Wednesday but two of them went missing following heavy snowfall and avalanches at some places along the route.
“Only one of them managed to reach Ganderbal and informed the administration about the two missing persons. However, the missing persons managed to contact the authorities through a phone call and informed that they had taken shelter under Shitkari bridge,” he said.
Ali said as the rescue team reached the spot, they found nine persons at the spot including the two employees.
“They have been airlifted in Cheetah helicopters to Sonamarg from where they will be flown to Ganderbal district headquarters in a Mi-17 chopper,” he added.
Snow avalanches hit Sonamarg area on Wednesday evening and in one incident, three army personnel were killed while six others were injured.

Lastupdate on : Fri, 24 Feb 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 24 Feb 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 25 Feb 2012 00:00:00 IST

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