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7 killed as cable vehicle plummets in Gulmarg

26 June 2017

This is the first time that disaster struck the Gulmarg cable auto service, which started operating in 1998.

In occupied Kashmir, seven persons, including four of a family, were killed on Sunday after Gondola cable derailed in tourist resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir's Baramulla district.

Police sources said people from several cable cars - former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah put their number at 15 - were struck or fell off down a valley in the tourist haven Gulmarg as movement came to a stop after the incident and the cars began to sway dangerously.

The accident was the first since the cable cars were installed 18 years ago, Hussain said. In the booth there was a family from Delhi, consisting of four people, including two children, and a local guide. There were two children as well who were killed after the cable auto came crashing down hundreds of meters to the ground.

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The present incumbent Mehbooba Mufti has expressed grief and shock over the "tragic accident" and said that she was herself monitoring the rescue operations.

They were identified as Jayant Andraskar S/o Namdev R/o b-209 Delhi admin staff qtrs Shalimar Bagh Dehli, his wife Manshea Andraskar and their daughters Anagha Jayanat Andraskar and Janhvi Jayant Andraskar.

Though the details are hazy and unclear, reports said speedy winds uprooted a pine tree and it hit the cable auto. A local guide named Mukhtar Ahmed was also killed in the accident. She also ordered a highlevel inquiry into lapses that might have caused the accident amid probing questions by former CM Omar Abdullah as to why the cable auto service had not been shut down as a precautionary measure because of high winds. He tweeted "What bad news! That's a laid down SOP". The two-stage cable auto lift ferries people to a height of 13,780 feet above the sea level. The service draws thousands of people in the summer as Gulmarg is a centre of winter sports.

The Tribune has reported that more than 100 people are stranded on the gondola ropeway.