4 members of nomad family die as tree falls on tent in Kishtwar

Wailing family members near dead bodies of their dear ones, in Kishtwar area on Thursday.
Wailing family members near dead bodies of their dear ones, in Kishtwar area on Thursday.

Rains lash J&K, hailstorm wreaks havoc
Washed away woman’s body recovered

Gopal Sharma
JAMMU/ SRINAGAR, May 25: Four members of a nomad family died after a tree during heavy rain and windstorm fell on their tent in remote Keshwan forest area of Kishtwar last night while dead body of a woman who was washed away in Betar river near Poonch last evening was recovered today.
Official sources said the incident took place in Bhalna forest area of remote Keshwan belt, about 45 kms from Kishtwar, adding that high-speed winds and heavy rainfall uprooted the big tree.
“A pine tree fell on a tent pitched by the Tribal (Bakerwal) family in the forest belt. In this tragic incident, four family members lost their lives early today,” SSP Kishtwar, Khalil Poswal said.
The family was going towards Dachhan area with its sheep and goats and had halted in Bhalna forest due to heavy rains, he added.
Deputy Commissioner, Kishtwar, Devansh Yadav said that four members of a tribal family including three women, died on the spot.
“A police team immediately rushed to the spot and started rescue operation,” Yadav said, adding that the bodies are being taken to Kishtwar Hospital for legal formalities.
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Yadav said an immediate relief of Rs 50,000 each to the family of deceased persons is being provided.
The deceased have been identified as Nazir Ahmed, son of Chatu and his wife-Nissara Begum, Maimna Begum, wife of Mohd Sharief and Shamma Begum, wife of Kalu, all residents of Ghati in Barwal block of Kathua district.
Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha, has expressed grief over the loss of lives due to unfortunate incident in Keshwan area of Kishtwar.
“Deeply anguished by the loss of lives in a tragic incident in Kishtwar. My thoughts are with those who lost their loved ones,” the Lt Governor said.
Sinha directed the Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar to provide all assistance to next of kin of the deceased.
Chairman Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) Ghulam Nabi Azad also expressed shock over the loss of lives of four members of Bakerwal family after a tree fell on their tent in Kishtwar area.
In a statement, Azad lauded the efforts of locals for launching immediate rescue operation and directed senior party leaders to supervise the rescue work. He urged the administration to provide all possible support and compensation to the bereaved families.
Meanwhile, the dead body of a woman who was washed away on Wednesday in flooded Betar river near Degwar in Poonch was recovered today.
Official sources said that aunt and niece while crossing the nallah yesterday were washed away near Degwar after which rescue operation by Police, locals, SDRF and CRPF was launched and one among them namely Naseem Akhtar was rescued, while the operation to rescue another woman was continued.
However, at around 7:30 AM today, her dead body was recovered from the bank of the river downstream. The deceased was identified as Kulzam Bi, wife of Mohd Sadiq, resident of Tugloo Noorkote area of Poonch. A senior Police officer said that after performing all the legal formalities, the body was handed over to the family for last rites.
Due to heavy rain in Mendhar area of Poonch last night, the wall of Govt Degree College, Mendhar collapsed today. The students alleged that he wall has been damaged third time. When the rain water enters inside the college, it causes damage to the wall, in view of no proper passage for the water. Mohd Azam, Principal of the college said that in the absence of proper drainage system the wall has collapsed.
In view of the rain in many parts of Jammu region today, there has been significant fall in temperature. The water logging at many places and low lying areas of Jammu city hit the smooth movement of traffic. However, in the afternoon the sky was clear.
Meanwhile, hailstorm in dozens of North Kashmir villages caused havoc this afternoon damaging fruits and standing crops while rains lashed the Valley and hills had fresh snowfall today.
The heavy rains followed by hailstorm destroyed crops including apple at Khamoh, Rafiabad, Wagoora, Kreeri and Ladoora areas of Baramulla besides Haihama, Gutlipora, Kralpora, Trehgam, Sogam, Drugmulla, Salkoot and other villages of Kupwara even as many areas including Rafiabad, Poutu Khah, Wagoora, Watergam, Pattan in Sopore area and Bandipora district.
An official said that the storm unleashed significant damage to agricultural crops, including wheat, rice, and vegetables.
He said that preliminary reports suggest that fruit-laden trees, including apple, cherry, and pear orchards, have suffered extensive damage, endangering the livelihoods of countless farmers and workers who rely on this sector.
The local population have in the meantime appealed to the authorities to assess the situation arising out of the situation and to compensate them to overcome the loss caused by the storm.
Heavy rains lashed the Valley and upper reaches had fresh snowfall even as the weatherman forecast fairly widespread to widespread intermittent light to moderate rain in Jammu and Kashmir till May 26.
From May 26, he said, there is possibility of “fairly widespread to widespread intermittent light to moderate rain/thunder/lightning with possibility of hailstorm and gusty winds at few places.”
From May 27-28, he said, intermittent light rain/thunder/ lightning is expected at few places.
“Fairly widespread intermittent light to moderate rainthunder/lightning with possibility of hailstorm and gusty winds at few places,” he said regarding forecast from May 29-30.