16 Amarnath pilgrims killed, 30 injured as bus rolls down into gorge

RAMBAN/JAMMU, Jul 16: At least 16 Amarnath pilgrims were killed and around 30 injured when a bus skidded off the Jammu-Srinagar national highway and rolled down into a deep gorge in the Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir today, officials said.
The bus carrying pilgrims skidded off the road, turned turtle and rolled down into the Nullah at Nachlana belt of Ramban late this afternoon, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Ramban, Mohan Lal said.
According to police officials, 16 persons were killed and around 30 were injured in the accident.
A rescue operation was underway, they said.
It is pertinent to mention here that on receipt of the information, the nearby Army units 12 Rashtriya Rifles and 23 Rashtriya Rifles under Commanding Officer 23 Rashtriya Rifles immediately rushed with 17 columns to extricate the passengers from the ill-fated bus which had fallen into a deep gorge.
While 16 Yatris lost their lives in this unfortunate accident, the timely action by the Army personnel helped in rescue and evacuation of many seriously injured passengers. The injured were initially evacuated to SDH Banihal and Ramsoo. Subsequently 19 Yatris were evacuated by Indian Air Force helicopter to Jammu while 11 were moved by road to Srinagar.