At least five people have been killed in a cable vehicle accident in Indian-controlled Kashmir Sunday, a senior police official said. Delhi family of four, including two children along with their local guide were in the cabin that fell.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti ordered a high-level inquiry while expressed grief and shock over the deaths. "All the tourists have been rescued and the cable is being restored to get the cars running again", said SSP Baramulla Imtiyaz Hussain Mir.
Many tourists are feared to be stranded in the cable cars, reported NDTV.
Initial detials reaching The Kashmir Monitor reveal that at least five people in a cable auto may be dead after a windstorm uproot a tree and flung it on the cable holding the cars intact.
The accident drew condemnation from former chief minister Omar Abdullah, who, expressing his condolences in a series of tweets, questioned why the cable auto service wasn't shut down during high winds as a precautionary measure.
Rescue operations are underway as hundreds of tourists are stranded in Gulmarg, the official said, adding that cable vehicle service in the area has been temporarily stopped.
Immediately after the cable auto crashed, authorities launched an operation to rescue the people stuck in the gondolas.
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah questioned why the cable auto service had not been shut down as a precautionary measure because of high winds. The two-stage Gondola ferries about 600 people per hour to and from Kongdoori Mountain, a shoulder of nearby 13,780-feet-high Afarwat Peak.
He wrote: "What awful news!"
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah questioned why the cable vehicle service had not been shut down as a precautionary measure because of high winds. "That's a laid down SOP (standard operating procedure)", he said.