The death toll in the Poonch accident mounted to 12 as three among the 30 injured persons succumbed to their wounds on Wednesday, officials said.
Among the injured, five have been airlifted to GMC Jammu from district hospital Poonch, they said.
The accident occurred near Barari Ballah Sawjian when the driver of a minibus bus (JK12-1419) apparently lost control over it and the fell skidded off the road and rolled several hundred meters into the gorge. Soon after the accident, locals, police and army rushed to the spot and launched a massive rescue operation. Nine people died on the spot or on the way to hospital, a police official said
Later three among those critically injured died at hospital. Among the 27 other injured people, five seriously wounded have been airlifted to GMC Jammu for advanced treatment, the official said, as per news agency GNS
Among the deceased include Maroof Ahmad (14), Bashir Ahmad (40), Rozsia Akhtar (18), Zarina Begum (40), Mohammad Hassan (65), Nazima Akhtar (20), Imran Ahmad (5), Abdul Karim (70) and Abdul Qayoom (40), all locals.
Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha expressed grief over the loss of lives in the accident and announced Rs 5 lakh ex gratia for the kin of the deceased.
“Saddened by loss of lives due to a road accident in Sawjian, Poonch. Condolences to bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Rs 5 lakh would be given to the next of kin of the deceased. Directed police and civil authorities to provide best possible treatment to the injured,” Sinha tweeted.
President Droupadi Murmu, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar and leaders of different political parties, including former Jammu and Kashmir chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, also expressed grief over the loss of life and condoled the bereaved families.
“The loss of lives in a tragic road accident in Sawjian, Poonch is deeply distressing. My thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved families. I wish speedy recovery of the injured,” the President tweeted.
Dhankhar said in his tweet, “Pained to learn about the loss of lives in a bus accident in Poonch, Jammu and Kashmir. My deepest condolences to the bereaved family members and prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured.”
Abdullah said, “Very sorry to hear about the tragic loss of lives in a bus accident in Poonch. May the souls of the departed rest in peace & may the injured make a swift recovery.”
Mehbooba also expressed her shock over the accident. “Shocked to hear about the unfortunate accident at Sawajian Mandi in Poonch. Deepest condolences to the grieving families & prayers for the injured,” she tweeted