Dharamshala: At least 23 persons travelling in two buses were feared dead after the buses were swept away by a massive landslide near Jogindernagar in Mandi district last night. But the tragedy could be far greater, as more vehicles and people were believed to have been at the spot when an enitre hillside collapsed.
The buses are believed to have stopped for tea around midnight at a roadside stall at Kotrupi near Padder in Mandi district when the landslide struck, and swept them nearly 1 km into a gorge.
Most passengers travelling in the HRTC buses were from Chamba and Pathankot. One was an AC bus from the Pathankot depot (HP63-5840) and the other an ordinary bus from Chamba depot (HP73-4423). Driver Chanden Sharma and conductor Satpal of the Chamba depot bus were reported killed, while the staff of the other bus survived as they were not in the vehicle when the landslide hit.
Till the filing of this report the authorities had managed to pull out eight bodies from the buses buried under stones and mud.