Gandola Accident: High level probe ordered, compensation announced

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SRINAGAR: J&K government has announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs 5 lakh to every bereaved family who lost their members in the first major accident on the famed cable car at Gulmarg. Chief  Minister has ordered a high level probe into the mishap.

Seven persons died and two others  were injured when a cable car was derailed after it was hit by a tree.  Police with the help of locals launched an operation and rescued 150 person who were caught in the cabs and were hanging in air for more than an hour .

Speedy winds uprooted a pine tree and it hit the cable.  A cable car fell down that wiped away a family of tourists including father, mother and two daughters. Three locals also died in the accident.

Police identified the seven persons who died in the accident as Jayat Andraskar son of  Namdeo Andraskar, Manisha wife of Jayant Andraskar, Anaga Jayant, Anushka Jayant daughters of Jayant Andraskar residents of Shalimar Bagh, New Delhi, Mukhtar Ahmad(Guide) son of Ali Mohammad resident of Chountpathri  Babareshi, Jahangir Ahmad Khanday (Guide) son of Mohammad Akram resident of Waripora, Tangmarg  and Farooq Ahmad Chopan resident of Waripora, Tangmarg died  while two persons identified as Ajaz Ahmad Ganie son of Ghulam Ahmad resident of Kohlina, Chandoosa,  Tariq Ahmad Katariya son of Mohammaddin Katariya resident of Pachhar, Chandoosa Baramulla were injured.

Police said a number of locals especially All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) operators helped the police in rescue operation. In this operation 150 persons including tourists were rescued. For providing assistance all those who helped police will be suitably rewarded.

Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti has expressed grief and shock over the tragic accident. An official spokesman said she was personally monitoring the rescue operations. She later announced ex gratia relief of five lakh rupees in favour of next of kin of the killed. She has also directed conducting of a high level inquiry to know of the causes or lapses, if any, that led to the accident.

The Chief Minister has also conveyed her grief and condolence to the families of the three local youth who were also killed in the same accident.

As the news of the accident was received, team of high level officers led by the Divisional Commissioner and other officers supervised the rescue at the spot. The bodies of the deceased are being sent to their homes while as the injured have been shifted to hospital.

Governor N.N. Vohra has expressed grief over the tragic loss of lives in an unfortunate accident at the Gulmarg tourist resort.

In a message the Governor has prayed for peace to the departed souls and wished the bereaved families the strength to bear this sad loss.

Deputy Chief Minister, Dr. Nirmal Singh has expressed deep anguish and sorrow over the death of seven persons, including four tourists in a tragic accident at Gulmarg Gandola site.

In a condolence message, the Deputy Chief Minister has conveyed his sympathies with the bereaved families and prayed for peace to the departed souls.

Meanwhile, Dr. Singh has urged upon the authorities to make immediate arrangements for shifting the mortal remains of tourists to their homes and appropriate compensation to the next of the kin.

Minister for Health & Medical Education, Bali Bhagat and Minister for PHE, Ch. Sham Lal have expressed deep anguish on the demise of seven persons, including four tourists in a tragic accident at Gulmarg Gandola site.

The Ministers have conveyed their sympathies with the bereaved families and prayed for eternal peace for the departed souls.

National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah and Working President Mr Omar Abdullah on Sunday expressed deep grief over deaths in the tragic Gandola mishap in Gulmarg.

Conveying their condolences to the bereaved families, the President and Working President prayed for peace to the departed souls. They sought immediate assistance for those injured in the mishap and the families who have lost their dear ones in the mishap.

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