Antony condoles death of armed forces personnel in Leh

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New Delhi, Aug 14 (ANI): Defence Minister A K Antony on Saturday conveyed his heartfelt condolences to the near and dear ones of all those Armed Forces personnel who had lost their lives in the recent mudslide triggered by a cloudburst in Leh.

A series of cloudbursts hit the Himalayan town of Leh in Jammu and Kashmir late on Thursday night (August 6), resulting in flash floods and mudslides.

A cloud burst is a disaster weather event in which heavy rainfall occurs over a localised area at a faster than normal rate. The rate of rainfall may be of the order of 100 mm per hour.

Leh is located at 11,500 feet above sea level, about 425 kilometers from Srinagar, the state capital.

In a message on the eve of the 64th Independence Day, Antony said: "As the nation prepares to celebrate the Red Letter Day, his thoughts go out to those brave hearts who lost their lives in the line of duty, especially in the mudslide in Leh."

The Defence Minister wished speedy recovery to all those undergoing treatment at various hospitals.

As per the latest figures, the Army has suffered eight fatal and 41 non-fatal casualties till date. Twenty-seven Army personnel including three officers are still missing.

Antony commended the personnel from the Army, the Air Force, DRDO and the Border Roads Organisation for working day and night to restore normalcy in Leh.

The total death toll rose to 185, including 13 Nepali workers, three French, one Spanish and one Italian tourists. Around 500 people sustained injuries in the natural calamity.

Flash floods and mudslides have swept the road links and bridges in the area. The deluge has damaged hospitals, schools, government buildings, bus terminals, radio station transmitter, telephone exchange and mobile-phone towers.

Five villages Sabu, Phyang, Nimoo, Choglumsar and Shapoo are worst hit by the sudden downpour and flash floods. Old Leh city is also among the worst affected. (ANI)

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