The Southern Command, which has its headquarters in Pune, is sending more troops to help out those affected by the floods in Kerala. Four teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) battalion in Pune are already deployed in the state. Teams of divers from Special Forces of the Indian Army have also been pressed into search and rescue operations.
As per information given by officials from the NDRF Battalion stationed at Talegaon in Pune, four teams of rescuers were airlifted from the city on Wednesday evening and pressed into action in Pathanamthitta, Idukki and Alappuzha, along with other NDRF teams from across the country.
“A total of 10 columns and Eight Engineer Task Forces, comprising about 1,500 troops distributed into almost 100 teams, are operating in all districts of Kerala, except Kasaragod, Kottayam and Kollam… In addition, some divers from Special Forces have also been stationed at the Disaster Control Cell to cater to any emergencies,” stated a press statement from the Southern Command of the Indian Army.
“The focus of activity continues to be on rescuing stranded civilians from marooned areas by using rafts, boats… Concurrently, areas cut off due to landslides have been reconnected by clearing of debris and construction of temporary bridges at many locations. So far, approximately 25 temporary bridges have been constructed or repaired and approximately 40 major roads have been opened and cleared for the general public. Medical aid… has been provided to more than 2,000 people in the affected areas. More than 4,000 civilians have been rescued and moved to safer locations by Army teams. Synergy with all agencies involved in disaster management has been established, along with establishment of the Disaster Control Cell at Thiruvananthapuram,” it added.