16 Army soldiers killed, 4 injured in road accident in Sikkim


In a tragic incident, sixteen jawans, including three Junior Commissioned Officers and 13 soldier, of the Indian Army, lost their lives in an accident on Friday (December 23) as the truck they were travelling skidded down a steep slope and fell into a gorge in Sikkim.

The accident took place in Zema in North Sikkim, the Indian Army said in a statement.

The vehicle in which the soldiers were travelling was part of a three-vehicle convoy that had moved from Chatten in the morning towards Thangu.

Enroute at Zema, the vehicle skidded down a steep slope while negotiating a sharp turn, the Army statement said.

A rescue mission was immediately launched, and four injured soldiers have been air evacuated. Unfortunately, three Junior Commissioned Officers and 13 soldiers succumbed to the injuries sustained in the accident, it said.

“Indian Army stands firm with the bereaved families, at this hour of loss,” the statement added.

Expressing grief over the incident, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh tweeted, “Deeply pained by the loss of lives of the Indian Army personnel due to a road accident in North Sikkim.”

“The nation is deeply grateful for their service and commitment. My condolences to the bereaved families. Praying for the speedy recovery of those who are injured,” Singh added.