Amarnath Yatra Cloudburst: 16 dead, 40 feared missing; here is what we know so far; watch video

A huge cloudburst was reported at around 5.30 pm on Friday in the lower reaches of Amarnath cave

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Saturday, July 09, 2022, 05:07 PM IST

At least 16 people have been killed so far, while nearly 40 are feared missing after a cloudburst was reported near the holy Amarnath Cave in Jammu and Kashmir.

A huge cloudburst was reported at around 5.30 pm on Friday in the lower reaches of Amarnath cave.

Informing about the conditions of pilgrims who were being treated, Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) officials said that 35 people have been discharged following treatment. 17 people are getting the treatment and are likely to get discharged tonight. All safe and healthy.

Rescue operations:

Over 15,000 pilgrims have moved to the lower base camp, according to officials, and more than 40 people are still missing.

Rescue operations are being carried out in the cloudburst-affected area at the lower Amarnath Cave site.

NDRF, SDRF and other associated agencies along with ITBP are stationed at the site to carry out rescue operations. Helicopters are also being used to rescue people.

Police and other civil administration have launched a rescue operation as some langars were affected by the gushing waters.

This morning, 21 wounded people were airlifted to Baltal. An official stated that the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has dispatched three teams totaling approximately 75 rescuers.

Indian Army:

Indian Army has launched six rescue teams, including Army helicopters for the aid of Yatris in Cloudburst affected area at lower Amarnath Cave site, Norther Army Command informed.

A total of 10 Army rescue teams with Army Dogs continue rescue operations.

ALH Chopper was stationed at Panchtarini for evacuation.

Indian Air Force assets including helicopters and personnel on standby to launch rescue and relief operations.

Further operations by IAF Mi-17V5 and Cheetal helicopters are in progress. Aircraft are on standby at all major air bases in Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh areas.

Yatra to resume:

Informing about the incident, ITBP PRO Vivek Kumar Pandey said, "the Amarnath Yatra has been suspended till the situation turned normal. Likely to be resume by Saturday." The Yatra was suspended until Friday evening.

High alert:

The Jammu and Kashmir administration has issued an advisory and has ordered all SDMs, tehsildars of Ramban district to remain on high alert.

In the advisory, the J&K administration said, "All Sub Divisional Magistrates and their Tehsildars in District Ramban are hereby ordered to remain on high alert. Further SDRF component in the District, along with QRT teams, will also remain in active mode and keep their rescue equipment available."

J&K L-G Manoj Sinha meets injured victims:

Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, on Saturday, visited SKIMS in Srinagar to enquire about the health of the devotees who were injured in yesterday's incident of cloudburst near the holy Amarnath Cave in south J&K.

Union Home minister Amit Shah took note of the situation and said saving the lives of people was on priority.

PM extends condolences:

"Anguished by the cloud burst near Shree Amarnath cave. Condolences to the bereaved families. Spoke to@manojsinha_Ji and took stock of the situation. Rescue and relief operations are underway. All possible assistance is being provided to the affected," the PM tweeted.

Omar Abdulla and Mehbooba Mufti express grief:

Expressing grief over the incident, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah tweeted, "Sorry to hear about the cloudburst near the Amarnath Cave. Prayers for everyone caught up in it with the hope that they are all able to escape unscathed."

"Saddened & shocked to know about the tragic cloudburst accident near the Amarnath cave. Deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their lives," JKPDP President Mehbooba Mufti tweeted.

Sonia Gandhi extends condolences:

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi extends condolences to bereaved families over the Amarnath cave cloudburst incident, saying, "I was very distressed to learn about the tragic death of number of pilgrims on account of cloudburst near the holy cave shrine of Amarnath in J&K."

Farooq Abdullah orders probe:

Jammu and Kashmir National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah on July 9, Saturday, expressing sorrow about the Amarnath cloud burst incident, said that a probe must be carried out and that the government "needs to explain" what happened.

The 43-day Yatra began on June 30 from the twin routes -- the traditional 48-km from Nunwan in Pahalgam in south Kashmir's Anantnag, and the 14-km shorter but steep Baltal route in Ganderbal district of central Kashmir.

Emergency helpline number:

Emergency helpline numbers are active in view of the cloudburst J&K NDRF: 011-23438252, 011-23438253

Kashmir Divisional Helpline: 0194-2496240

Shrine Board Helpline: 0194-2313149

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