Death toll in Neelum valley rose to 62: NDMA

MIRPUR (AJK): Jan 15 (APP): The death toll in the avalanches triggered by recent heavy rains and snowfall in Neelum valley district of Azad Jammu and Kashmir has risen to 62 besides injuring of 53 others, it was officially said.

According to the National Disaster Management Authority, (NDMA), the snow avalanches plagued the villages of Surgan, Kel, Lawat, Chaknat and some other places in Neelum district.

The avalanches have damaged 198 houses, 22 shops, one mosque and 12 vehicles in the heavy snow-fall riddled valley.

Rescue and relief activities are continuing in the rain and snow-hit areas of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, the third successive day on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Ali Amin Gandapur said that the stormy rain-snow fall victims will not be left alone and government will help them to rebuild their damaged homes on immediate basis.

Talking to media on Wednesday in the state’s metropolis, he expressed deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives and urged local administration to provide all possible assistance to the people of affected areas.

Meanwhile, spokesperson of NDMA Brigadier Waseem Uddin told media that the authority is providing all necessary assistance to the victims of snow-rain in Neelum valley of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Balochistan.

He said the affected families are being provided food, blankets and medicines.

At the same time, Pak-Army in collaboration with civil administration is also engaged in rescue and relief operation in the glacier and land slide affected areas of Neelum valley.

Search to recover 12 missing people at Surgan valley is also underway. So far, 62 people have died while 60 injured have been admitted to different hospitals. Three helicopters have been engaged in relief activities.

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