Kishtwar accident: Death toll jumps to 17

File photo. Photograph:( ANI )

ANI Kishtwar, Jammu and Kashmir Sep 14, 2018, 06.50 PM (IST)

The death toll in the Kishtwar van accident has mounted to 17.

The mishap happened when an overloaded minibus fell into a deep gorge in the mountainous area Friday morning, police said.

"The accident occurred at around 9 AM in Thakrai area of Kishtwar district, when the vehicle packed with passengers, coming from Keshwan, plunged into a gorge," Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar Angrez Singh Rana told ANI.

SP Vaid, who was recently transferred as Jammu and Kashmir Transport Commissioner tweeted that the "cause of accident being ascertained, I wish I can do something to prevent this."

The accident also left 16 others injured, who are now being treated in a hospital.

Eleven people were rescued and airlifted by a helicopter to Jammu, confirmed Rana.

Former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti expressed condolences.

She wrote on Twitter, "Heartfelt condolences to the families who lost their loved ones in a road accident in Kishtwar today. Would like to Impress upon the Divisional administration to launch rescue ops on war footing to evacuate the injured and provide them specialised treatment."