STATE TIMES NEWSDODA: A pall of gloom descended on Mangoota village in Doda district as all the 16 people who were killed in Tuesday’s road accident were its inhabitants. An SUV, carrying 17 passengers, skidded off the road and fell into a 700-metre gorge near Marmat, leaving only one survivor whose condition is also stated to be critical. A police official said all the 16 victims belonged to Mangoota village of Marmat, 10 kms from here, and included five women. Senior Superintendent of Police, Doda, Mumtaz Ahmad said one more person was rescued from the accident site near Marmat area of the hilly district in a critical condition and admitted to hospital for treatment. Twelve people were killed on the spot after the accident and four more succumbed to injuries while undergoing treatment, the SSP said. Officials said the SUV was headed for Gowa village of Marmat from Kleeni when its driver lost control while negotiating a blind curve and the vehicle fell into the 700-metre-deep gorge around 3.25 pm. The condition of the only survivor, who was initially treated at a local hospital and later shifted to the Government Medical College Hospital Jammu, is critical, they said. Divisional Commissioner, Jammu has expressed grief and shock over loss of lives in Doda road mishap. The Divisional Commissioner said that the accident is heart-wrenching. “We mourn all those who lost their lives and express deep condolences to the bereaved families” he said. He prayed for fast recovery of the survivor. The administration has ordered an inquiry to ascertain the reasons for the tragic mishap, according to an official spokesperson. As the news of the accident and subsequent deaths reached the village, the wailing relatives rushed to the local police station to collect the bodies, an official said. He said the dead included two young couples and their children — Mohammad Irshad, his wife Jabeena and their two minor sons Naseer Ahmed and Tanveer Ahmed, and Firdous Ahmed, his wife Rabia and their baby. Tanveera Begum and her two toddlers also died in the accident, while leaving her husband Tamoor Ahmad critically injured, the official said, adding that he was referred to the Government Medical College Hospital in Jammu after initial treatment at the district hospital. The other victims were identified as driver Naseer Ahmad, Tabrez, Sameer, Fiaz Ahmed, Ameena and Shaheena, the official added. Congress has expressed shock and grief over the loss of lives in the accident. In a condolence message issued here, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, AICC General Secretary, Ambika Soni and JKPCC President G.A Mir have expressed great shock over loss of lives in the accident and conveyed heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families. They prayed for peace to the departed souls. “They urged the authorities to sanction adequate ex gratia relief to the families of deceased and the injured immediately,” said Chief Spokesperson JKPCC Ravinder Sharma. Provincial President National Conference Devender Singh Rana expressed grief and shock over the deaths. “My heart goes to all those who have lost their near and dear ones in this tragic mishap”, Rana said in a statement, wishing early recovery to all those who were injured in the accident. He also sought immediate release of ex-gratia to the next kith and kins of the deceased and free specialized medical treatment for all those injured in the mishap. Rana expressed solidarity with the bereaved families and prayed for peace to the departed souls.
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