|7 killed, 11 critical as vehicle falls into gorge|
|Early Times Report|
Rajouri, Aug 25: Seven people, including a minor boy, were killed while 25 more were injured on Sunday when an overloaded private vehicle skidded off a road and fell into a deep gorge in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district, a senior official said.
The victims were en route to the famous shrine of Sharda Sharief from Poonch when the vehicle fell into the 800-metre-deep gorge in the Thanamandi area around 1.30 pm after its driver lost control while negotiating a curve, Rajouri District Development Commissioner (DDC) Aijaz Asad said.
He said seven people, including four women and a minor boy, were killed and 25 more injured in the accident.
Eleven of the critically injured, some of whom had head injuries, were referred to the Government Medical College (GMC) Hospital, Jammu, for specialised treatment, Asad said, adding that the remaining 14 were admitted to the district hospital in Rajouri and their condition was "stable".
The DDC said the district administration would extend every possible help to the victims on humanitarian grounds.
Most of the victims were relatives and neighbours who had hired the vehicle from Khanetar village of Poonch in the morning to visit the shrine, he said.
A police official said the dead included a couple, Mohammad Pazir (40) and his wife Safeena (33).
He identified the other deceased as four-year-old Abdul Qayoom, Mohammad Rashid (50), Mansha Begum (60), Masarat Bi (20) and Kaneeza Bi (45).
The official said a police investigation was underway.