Avalanche kills 3 Indian army soldiers in Kashmir

The avalanche struck two days after a government agency issued 24-hour avalanche warning for several districts of Jammu and Kashmir

The avalanche struck two days after a 24-hour avalanche warning was issued in several districts of Jammu and Kashmir, including Kupwara, on Wednesday, shortly after a 6.2 magnitude quake on the Afghanistan-Tajikistan border region jolted parts of north India.

Officials said an avalanche hit the post of Army's Rajputana battalion near Sonpundi post in Machil sector around 4 pm.

Avalanches and landslides are common in Himalayan Kashmir. The deceased soldiers have been identified as Havaldar Kamlesh Kumar, Naik Balbeer, and Sepoy Rajinder while Sepoy Bipin is said to be stable. The quick rescue operation recovered the soldiers but one of them died shortly after the rescue while two others succumbed to their injuries on way to Army base hospital in Srinagar.

The soldiers were from the 21 Rajput regiment, an unidentified senior Army officer told GNS. Four soldiers were swept.

In January previous year 14 soldiers lost their lives in two snow avalanche in Gurez sector in Bandipora district while Major Amit Sagar of the High Altitude Warfare School died when an Army camp of 115 Battalion was hit by an avalanche at Sonmarg in central Kashmir's Ganderbal district.

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