Rains claim 14 lives in Jammu

  • HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times, Jammu/Srinagar
  • Updated: Sep 05, 2014 12:31 IST

Fourteen people were killed and more than 100 houses damaged in rains in the Jammu region. Jammu divisional commissioner Shantmanu said that 10 people lost their lives on Wednesday and four more people died on Thursday.

The damage is being assessed and control rooms were activated. “We have launched a major relief and rescue operations in the affected areas to shift the public on safer locations,” he said.

On Wednesday, eight people died in Reasi district and six in Poonch district.

Meanwhile, the army has launched Operation Megh Rahat in the area of Nowshera, Rajouri, Thanamandi and Poonch districts in coordination with civil district authorities. In Rajouri, Thanamandi and Poonch, army rescued civilians caught in flash floods or slides.

In Rajouri and Poonch, 31 Border Roads Task Force is leading the road clearance activity 8 km ahead of Bhimber Gali. The army has started clearing the areas between Kalai bridge and Sher-e-Kashmir bridge near Poonch, which have suffered heavy damage. A bridge near Khanetar Nala in Poonch was swept away and efforts are on to connect the same. Army on Wednesday rescued around 108 civilians from the far-flung areas of Thanamandi, Poonch, Rajouri, Nowshera, Mohr and Budhal.

A family of three persons were rescued in Poonch on Thursday morning.

In a rescue operation, 20 civilians were rescued from Dhoks. In Gulabgarh Bowl, Uniform Force was able to rescue many civilians.

Road traffic hit
The landslides triggered due to rains have also led to the closure of the Jammu-Srinagar Highway, the only surface link between the valley and the rest of the region.

The NH 44 connecting Jammu-Banihal-Srinagar was closed for traffic on Wednesday due to heavy mudslides, which was opened by the BRTF, which pressed men and machinery for whole night on Wednesday. The highway was cleared of debris around 11.30 am and all the overnight stranded passenger vehicles were cleared.

However, sudden spell of heavy rain around 3 pm washed away around 50 feet stretch of road in the Ramsoo area, thereby, completely delinking Jammu from the valley. At present 225 commercial vehicles bound for the valley are stranded at various points on the highway.

Also the road link to Doda, Kishtwar and Bhadewah was cut off to due 12 major landslides on various stretches of the road.

Srinagar faces brunt
Incessant rains for the past three days have resulted in Kashmir’s main river Jhelum flowing above danger mark; more than seven feet above danger level.

The water-level of the river at Srinagar’s Ram Munshi Bagh is over 21 metres, while as it is 28.8 metres at Sangam.

“We have shifted all belongings to the second floor of our house since 5 am. We are waiting water to recede, otherwise we will have to leave the area and water can breach any time now,” said Imran Yousuf, a resident of Srinagar’s posh locality of Padshahi Bagh area, housing bungalows.

Separatists to pitch in
All Parties Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Geelani has asked activists of Hurriyat Conference and Tehreek-e-Hurriyat to suspend their routine work and help the people of the flood-affected areas in every possible way.

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