Kishtwar tragedy | Driver's negligence, bad road condition responsible for accident: Inquiry

Preliminary inquiry into the Kishtwar accident in which at least 36 persons were killed and 16 others injured, has revealed that the cause of the accident was negligence on the part of the driver and the bad road condition.

The accident occurred on Monday morning when an overloaded matador skidded off the road and fell into a deep gorge at Thakrie area of Keshwan in Kishtwar district of Jammu division. At least 36 passengers in the matador died and 16 others were injured in the accident.

“The preliminary inquiry has revealed the negligence on the part of the driver and the dilapidated condition of the area,” Transport Commissioner, Dr S P Vaid, told Greater Kashmir.

He said that Additional Transport Commissioner, RTO and other officials from Kishtwar district visited the accident site.  “These are their preliminary findings.”

He said the road in the area is narrow and has been constructed under PMGSY. “The road is in very bad condition without having any protection bunds,” he said.

Vaid said that although he had ordered inquiry into the accident initially, “the government too issued orders for through probe into the accident.”

“I too will visit the accident site for through probe into the accident.”

The inquiry, according to the officials, will look into the reasons for the accident, fix responsibility, if any, and suggest measures to be taken to prevent recurrence of such accidents in Kishtwar.

The J&K government had last year introduced the Jammu and Kashmir Road Safety Council Bill, 2018, advocating the formation of a State Road Safety Council. According to the bill, the proposed council will be responsible for ensuring road safety across the state and will advise the state government on transport safety measures.