11 jawans killed in two avalanches in Kashmir

Srinagar: At least 11 Army jawans were killed today and some others were feared trapped as avalanches struck two army camps in Ganderbal and Bandipora districts of Kashmir Valley.

The first avalanche struck the workshop of 109 infantry brigade of Army posted at Dawar in Gurez area of Bandipora district during the intervening night, a defence spokesman said. The rear end of the brigade which houses the workshop was buried under the thick snow.

The spokesman said over 20 jawans were buried under the avalanche. "We have so far rescued 15 soldiers and recovered bodies of eight others," he added.

Some jawans were feared trapped. Another avalanche struck Sonamarg area of Ganderbal district killing three Army jawans in their camp, the spokesman said.

Authorities had issued medium avalanche warning for both Sonamarg and Gurez areas following fresh snowfall in the higher reaches of the Valley.