Baramulla: Four members of a nomad family were killed while the head of the family was missing, after multiple cloudbursts hit forest area of Rafiabad in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district during Saturday night, an official said.
The multiple cloudbursts also caused flashfloods in several villages of Rafiabad. Two culverts and some buildings suffered damage by the gushing waters triggered by the cloudburst.
Officials identified the deceased as Shahnaza Begum, 30; Nazia Akhtar, 14; Arif Hussain, 5; and Tariq Ahmad Khari, 8; all residents of Nowshera Rajouri.
Head of the family, Muhammad Bashir Khari, 80, was missing and efforts were on to trace him. “One of the family members Muhammad Farooq Khari was found alive,” officials said.
An official said that besides human loss, the cloudburst was likely to have washed away livestock of the nomad family. “The exact number of the livestock of the family is yet to be known. Since nomads are accompanied by herds of animals, chances of their (livestock) survival are least,” said Sajad Rasool, Tehsildar Dangiwacha.
Soon after the incident, the Baramulla district administration dispatched rescue teams comprising J&K Police, SDRP and Revenue officials to the affected area.
“So far four bodies had been recovered while an elderly person of the family is still missing,” Tehsildar Dangiwacha said.
Deputy Inspector General of Police north Kashmir range, Sujit Kumar, while confirming the death of four persons in the incident said that the nomad family consisted of six members. “So far four bodies have been recovered, while an elderly member of the family is still missing. However, one of the family members, Muhammad Farooq Khari was found alive”.
An official said that the family had arrived some 15 days back in the area and were staying in at Kafarnar Behak in the forest area of Rafiabad.
The family is believed to have been preparing for their departure from the area when the incident happened.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner Baramulla Bhupinder Kumar accompanied by SP Sopore and other concerned functionaries today visited the upper reaches of Rafiabad area and took the first hand appraisal of the post-cloudburst situation.
On the occasion, the DC took review of the ground situation and directed the concerned authorities to provide every type of support to the living family members.
He expressed his grief over the loss of human lives besides extending his deep condolences.
The DC assured that every possible assistance shall be provided from district administration following due assessment of the loss.
The DC also emphasized upon the officers to immediately restore the essential services like water and power supply that may have been disrupted due to the flashfloods driven by the cloudburst.
The DC also visited the hospital where the injured persons have been admitted and enquired about their health.
He interacted with them and directed the health authorities to provide proper medical treatment to such persons.