Relief and rescue operation (R&R OPS) by Indian armed forces

News and Press Release
Originally published
July 2, 2005 - Asadha 11, 1927 - New Delhi

As the flood situation in Gujarat continues to be grim, the Indian Army & Air Force are assisting the civil administration in a relentless pursuit to provide succour to the flood affected people of Gujarat and also in Himachal Pradesh.

The Indian Air Force today has reinforced its effort in the flood affected areas of Gujarat by despatching more helicopters (4 MI-17s) from the Sarsawa & Hindon airbase to the Gujarat theatre of R & R Ops. These four helicopters would be an addition to the 12 MI-17s that are already deployed in Gujarat.

The Indian Army has deployed 9 columns at Vadodara, Anand, Khera & Rajkot. A total of 12 boats have been deployed in South Gujarat. Another 21 boats have been airlifted by the IAF to Ahmedabad for deployment in R & R ops. Today another 34 boats would be airlifted from Bangalore and Pune for deployment in Vadodara and Ahmedabad, taking the total to 93 boats. The Indian Army has so far rescued more than 600 affected people.

In addition to this Indian Air Force today has airlifted 20 tonnes of bleaching powder from Chennai to be used for the purpose of sanitation and disinfection. IAF is continuing the dropping of food packets for the affected people in Gujarat. IAF, so far has air dropped more than 14 tonnes of food packets in Gujarat alone.

In Himachal pradesh, due to partial improvement in situation the R & R Ops are now being carried out by one MI-17 and two Cheetahs. The Cheetahs are employed in evacuation of stranded persons from NAKO and the MI-17 is carrying out evacuation shuttles Ex-Rampur.

The Defence Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee has been monitoring the situation even while on tour to the United States since the onset of flood situation. Senior officials of the Defence Ministry are keeping a round the clock vigil over the situation and instructions have been given to rush relief material and rescue teams as and when required. The Home Secretary, Shri V K Duggal is also reviewing the relief efforts.