Ladakh: Five tank-bound soldiers swept away while crossing river

The incident occurred near Mandir Morh during an exercise at around 1.00 am, officials said

Representative image
Representative image


Five Army personnel, including a junior commissioned officer, drowned when their T-72 tank sank owing to flash floods in the Shyok river near the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Nyoma-Chushul area of Ladakh early on Saturday, 29 June, officials said.

The incident occurred near Mandir Morh during an exercise at around 1 am, the officials said. “On 28 June, 2024 night, while de-inducting from a military training activity, an Army tank got stuck in the Shyok River, near Saser Brangsa, eastern Ladakh due to sudden increase in the water level.

“Rescue teams rushed to the location, however, due to high current and water levels, the rescue mission didn't succeed and the tank crew lost their lives. Indian Army regrets loss of five brave personnel while being operationally deployed in eastern Ladakh. Rescue operations are underway,” a Leh-based Army PRO said in a statement.

In a post on X, Union defence minister Rajnath Singh condoled the loss of lives. “Deeply saddened at the loss of lives of five of our brave Indian Army soldiers in an unfortunate accident while getting the tank across a river in Ladakh,” he said.

“We will never forget exemplary service of our gallant soldiers to the nation. My heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families. The nation stands firm with them during this hour of grief,” he said.

In his own post on X, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge also expressed distress at the death of the five soldiers. "Deeply distressed at the loss of lives of five Indian Army bravehearts, including a JCO (junior commissioned officer), while getting a T-72 tank across a river in Ladakh," Kharge said.

"Our heartfelt condolences to the families of the Army personnel who fell victim to this painful tragedy. In this hour of grief, the nation stands together in saluting the exemplary service of our valiant soldiers," he added.

More updates to follow.

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