Thirty civilians were rescued by the armed forces on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday from the Chowkibal-Tangdhar road in Jammu and Kashmir, an official said. The civilians were trapped in the snow near Khooni Nala and SM Hill on the highway after fresh snowfall and two avalanches hit the region.
According to the officials, as soon as the information of civilians being stuck in their vehicles reached the troops at NC Pass, two avalanche rescue teams from Indian Army and a team of General Reserve Engineer Force (GREF) were mobilised.
Despite adverse weather conditions compounded by twin avalanches, 14 civilians were rescued and brought to Neelam and 16 civilians to NC pass, also known as Sadhna Pass, they said.
All the rescued civilians were provided food, medical care and shelter for the night. Twelve vehicles were later retrieved during the day on Tuesday, post avalanche and snow slides clearance from the road. The entire rescue operation took about five to six hours.