Amarnath Yatra: 13 people dead, over 40 missing due to flash floods

According to local police officials, teams from the J&K Police, NDRF, and SDRF are vigorously searching the location for the missing persons

Thirteen people have died and more than 40 are missing as a result of the flash floods caused by a cloudburst in the Baltal area, which serves as the base camp for the Amarnath pilgrimage in the Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday, according to the latest reports.

As per reliable sources, there was a cloud burst at around 5:30 PM that led to flash floods. Three langers and more than 20 tents were said to have been lost in the floodwaters. A few individuals have been saved, but there are still about 40 people missing.

Searches going on to locate the missing persons

A senior NDRF officer informed that a total of 13 dead bodies have been found so far while the search for the missing people is going on.

Officials from the local police said that teams of J&K Police, NDRF, and SDRF in addition to security forces are actively searching the area for the missing people.

‘DHSK ready to tackle any kind of eventuality’

Reports also said that Director Health Services Kashmir Dr M A Rather rushed to Baltal along with health officials to take an assessment of the situation. All hospitals have been kept alert and the department is ready to face any kind of eventuality, as per the official.

The staff deputed for Yatra duty including doctors, paramedics and other support staff are reportedly safe and there are no reports of any injury to any staff member so far, according to Dr Mir Mushtaq, who is the spokesperson of the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir.

SASB issues helpline numbers

A statement from the CEO, Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB), however, said that the rescue operation with NDRF, SDRF, J&K Police and other teams is going on and the focus is primarily on shifting the injured to the base camp hospitals.

It added that choppers have been pressed into service for the assistance of rescue teams. It also issued some helpline numbers: 011-23438252; 011-23438253 (NDRF); 0194-2496240 (Kashmir Divisional Helpline) and 0194-2313149 (Shrine Board Helpline).

LG Sinha briefs PM Modi and HM Amit Shah

In the meantime, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha briefed Home Minister Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The LG said that he briefed PM Modi and HM Amit Shah about the situation. He added that both the leaders have assured all the support.

Mr Sinha said that the administration’s first priority is to rescue lives and that all the required aid is provided to the pilgrims. He said he is keeping a tight eye on everything.

Along with expressing his concern, the LG extended his condolences. He said he is deeply saddened by the tragic cloudburst occurrence in the holy cave of Shri Amarnathji, which resulted in the loss of precious lives.

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