SRINAGAR: The bodies of Amarnath pilgrims who lost their lives are being identified and the process is underway, Inspector General of Border Security Force (BSF), Rajababu Singh said.
He said that a massive rescue operation is still going on and all the agencies have been pressed into service to airlift the bodies from the spot of the incident to Srinagar.
He also said that the BSF and other forces including NDRF, SDRF, CRPF, Army, J&K Police and others launched a joint rescue operation soon after the incident took place.
He added that the bodies were taken to Neelgat helipad and the task was given to the BSF chopper to airlift the bodies to Srinagar.
“The identification of some bodies has been ascertained while the rest are being ascertained. Bodies will be airlifted to their native places for last rites,” Singh said.
Officials said that BSF’s Mi-17 chopper has been pressed into the service to airlift the bodies.
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday visited Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Srinagar to enquire about the health of pilgrims who were injured in yesterday’s incident of cloudburst in the lower reaches of Amarnath cave.
At least 16 people have died in the cloud burst incident near the holy shrine of Amarnath, informed National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) DG Atul Karwal on Saturday.
“The relief and rescue operation is underway. All teams including NDRF, SDRF, Indian Army, and State forces are working in coordination. It is difficult to predict the exact time to complete the rescue operation,” Lieutenant Colonel Sachin Sharma told reporters.
“So far 28 injured patients have arrived out of which some severely injured have been shifted to Srinagar. A total of 8 choppers including Air Force and Army helicopters are in use for the rescue,” Sharma said.
While in Baltal, people who were safely evacuated from Amarnath cave to Panjtarni, Sangam base, appreciated the efforts of the Army.