One armyman, 4 locals killed in an avalanche hit in Kashmir

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An army officer and four members of a family were killed in avalanches in Ganderbal and Bandipora districts of Kashmir on Wednesday.

An avalanche hit an army camp at Sonamarg in central Kashmir's Ganderbal district this morning, a police official said.

He said an army officer -- Major Amit of High Altitude Warfare School (HAWS) -- was buried under the debris of the avalanche.

An army official said one soldier had died after getting trapped under the avalanche. However, the official did not reveal the rank and name of the soldier who lost his life in the incident.

In another avalanche incident, four members of a family died as their house was buried under snow in Gurez sector near Line of Control in Kashmir, the police official said.

The avalanche struck Badoogam village in Tulail area of Gurez in the wee hours today and buried the house of Mehraj-ud-Din Lone, a police official said.

He said the house collapsed under the debris of the avalanche resulting in the death of 55-year-old Lone, his wife Azizi (50), 22-year-old son Irfan and daughter Gulshan (19).

Lone another son, Reyaz Ahmad, was rescued by the authorities and admitted to a hospital for treatment, the official said.

The authorities in Kashmir have issued an avalanche warning in higher reaches of the valley following fresh snowfall yesterday and advised people to stay away from the mountains and foothills.

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