Nine soldiers were killed and another was critically injured after the vehicle they were travelling in fell into a deep gorge in Ladakh on Saturday evening.
The accident took place near Kiyari, around 150 km from Leh, at 5 pm. The Army vehicle, with 10 personnel on board, was on its way to Kyari from Karu, when its driver lost control and it plunged into the gorge.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) of Leh P.D. Nitya said a police team rushed to the spot and shifted all the injured soldiers to an Army medical facility where eight soldiers were declared brought dead. Another jawan succumbed to his injuries later.
"Saddened by the loss of Indian Army personnel due to an accident near Leh in Ladakh. We will never forget their exemplary service to our nation," Defence Minister Rajnath Singh wrote on X (formerly Twitter).
"My thoughts are with the bereaved families. The injured personnel have been rushed to the Field Hospital. Praying for their speedy recovery," he said.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah condoled the death of the soldiers and said the entire nation stands shoulder to shoulder with their bereaved families.
"The entire nation stands shoulder to shoulder with the bereaved families in this hour of grief. My sincerest condolences to them. May the injured recover at the earliest," he said.
Following Chinese aggression in Ladakh in 2020, the army has increased its deployment in Leh regions.
The Indian Air Force has also moved its assets to the cold region to counter the Chinese threat.
Currently, Indian and Chinese troops are deployed in a eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation, while negotiations to resolve the crisis are going on between the two countries.
—With inputs from Tariq Bhat