At least 10 persons died after a cloudburst near the Amarnath cave in India's Kashmir, ANI reported, citing the National Disaster Response Force Director General Atul Karwal. More casualties are feared.
The cloudburst occurred around 5.30 pm, resulting in heavy discharge of water in a canal adjoining the cave, reports Scroll In.
Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Range, Vijay Kumar said that the National Disaster Response Force was conducting rescue operations. The injured persons were being airlifted for treatment, he added.
Kumar Pandey, public relations officer of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police said that the cloudburst occurred in the upper reaches of the caves, ANI reported. "There were tents at the site...People were taken out within 10-15 minutes," he added.
The Amarnath Yatra has been stopped temporarily due to the area being inundated, he said.
"If the weather remains normal and makeshift arrangements are made, then the yatra can be resumed tomorrow," he added.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief. "Rescue and relief operations are underway," he wrote in a tweet. "All possible assistance is being provided to the affected."
Union Home Minister Amit Shah said that various agencies have been deployed in the rescue work. "Saving people's lives is our priority," he added. "I wish all the devotees well."