Bhadarwah/Jammu: Six persons were killed and 11 injured after flash floods triggered by a cloudburst wreaked havoc in Thathri town of Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir today, inundating vast areas along the Batote-Kishtwar National Highway and washing away half a dozen houses.
While 11 persons have been rescued from the debris, many others are feared trapped and the toll is likely to rise, police said.
Four of a family were among those killed in the cloudburst that damaged six houses, two shops and a school.
“Flash floods triggered by cloudburst hit Thathri town at 2.20 am resulting in a massive increase in the level of the ‘nullah’ flowing along the Jamai Masjid locality close to the town” a police officer said.
Dy SP (headquarters) Doda, Iftkhar Ahmed, said the water level and silt suddenly rose in the drain after the cloudburst, washing away several structures along its path leading to the main market.
“As of now, six persons including five women have died and their bodies recovered from the debris. 11 people have been injured and rescued from the debris. They have been shifted to hospital”, a police spokesman said.
Dev Raj of Nagni village lost his 40-year-old wife Naru Devi, daughters – 14-year-old Sapna Devi and 7-year-old Priya Devi and 9-year-old son Rahul. Their bodies have been recovered, police said.
Apart from them other two deceased persons have been identified as 45-year-old Patna Devi of Balgran and 15-year- old Shrishta Devi of Balgran.
The injured have been admitted to the Primary Health Centre (PHC) at Thathri, the spokesman said.
“However, several others are still under the debris and more casualties cannot be ruled out,” the Dy SP said.
“We cannot assess the exact loss of life or property immediately as we are in the middle of rescue operations trying to save those still trapped under the debris,” Ahmed said.
“The entire district administration, along with the police and army, has started rescue operation on a war footing,” the police official said.
The Batote-Doda-Kishtwar National Highway (NH1B) was closed due to huge boulders at Thathri market triggered by the cloudburst. Water supply pipes and power supply remained snapped in the area.