Tempo traveller plunges into river Chenab

A tempo traveller plunged into river Chenab in Ramban district on Monday afternoon. Passengers on board barring one who had a miraculous escape, are feared to have drowned. Police said that the tempo bearing registration number JK14D-7929 was on its way to Srinagar from Jammu. “The vehicle slipped into the Chenab this afternoon at Mehar ahead of Ramban town.”

“Due to recent rains the river Chenab had increased flow and the passengers on board the ill-fated vehicle are feared to have drowned,” police said.

Police said that one Mehrajdin son of Gulam Mohiudeen of Chandigam Awantipora, a cop posted at IRP 7th Battalion in Jammu, escaped unhurt in the accident. “He is being treated at District Hospital.”

Mehrajdin told Greater Kashmir that he was miraculously thrown out of the vehicle and he had suffered no injury.  “The vehicle was full of passengers when the accident took place,” he said.

A search operation was launched immediately but neither the vehicle nor any passenger was traced till late Monday evening.

Sources said those feared drowned may be outsiders who going for work to the valley.

Ramban police claimed the vehicle reportedly skidded off the road one km ahead of Ramban town on Jammu Srinagar National Highway.

They said some travellers’ bags and other items were seen floating on the water from the accident spot.

Due to dust, the visibility on the highway has reduced and chances of accidents have increased, sources said.

Senior police officers were monitoring the search operation jointly launched by Police, SDRF and local Civil QRT volunteers.  When contacted, SSP Ramban Hasseb Ur Rehman told Greater Kashmir that police was ascertaining how many passengers were in the vehicle at the time of accident.