Six people have been killed and several houses and shops destroyed as flash floods followed by a cloudburst struck Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir in the early hours today.
The cloudburst occured around 2 am today at Thatri town of the district, leading to flash floods.
Vast areas along the Batote-Kishtwar National Highway were flooded, washing away half-a-dozen houses and leaving several people trapped.
Police has recovered three dead bodies from the debris of the collapsed houses so far. Two people have been rescued alive. The rescue operation is still going on.
Deputy SP (headquarters) of Doda Iftkhar Ahmed said that the water level and silt suddenly rose in the drain flowing along the Jamai Masjid locality close to the town after the cloudburst, washing away several structures along its path leading to the main market.
Rescue operations are going on in full swing. The extent of the damage caused is yet to fully ascertained.
"We cannot assess the exact loss of life or property immediately as we are in the middle of rescue operations trying to save those still trapped under the debris," Ahmed said.
"The entire district administration along with the police and Army have started rescue operation on a war footing," the police official said.
The Batote-Doda-Kishtwar National Highway (NH1B) was closed due to huge boulders at Thathri market triggered by the cloudburst.