Four buried under avalanche in Kashmir, two rescued (Lead)

February 6th, 2009 - 11:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, Feb 6 (IANS) Two of the six people who were buried under an avalanche in north Jammu and Kashmir late Thursday were rescued Friday, officials said.“Six persons, one police constable and five civilians, were buried under an avalanche late last evening in Machil area of Kupwara district,” a senior police officer said here.

The officer said rescue was launched early Friday morning, but fresh avalanches in the area severely affected the operations.

“The victims are lying under 15 feet of snow and bad weather in the area is severely affecting our efforts to rescue the victims,” the officer said.

However, rescuers succeeded late Friday in saving two civilians, who were immediately rushed to hospital, Divisional Commissioner Masaud Samoon said.

Authorities refused to confirm the fate of the remaining four. While the chances of any survivors were very bleak more than 18 hours after the tragedy, rescue works would resume Saturday morning, officials said.

It had snowed heavily in Machil since Thursday evening and reports said the group of six was passing through the Zeed Ghali, a narrow gorge, when the avalanche struck them.

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