The civil administration in Andamans early Wednesday morning requested the assistance of the Indian Navy following heavy rainfall in Havelock. About 800 tourists are stranded and the Navy ships are waiting off the island. It said the evacuation process has been delayed due to rough weather.
In a statement issued, the Indian Navy said it has pressed into service its ships INS Bitra, Bangaram, Kumbhir and LCU 38. All the ships will assist in ferrying stranded tourists to Port Blair. The Navy said the safety of the tourists has been given top priority although the weather conditions and the swell in the sea is making rescue operations difficult. More details of the rescue operation are awaited.
WATCH VIDEO | Home Minister Rajnath Singh Assures Safety Of All Tourists Stranded On Havelock Island
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Havelock Island is the largest in Ritchie’s Archipelago, the chain of islands to the east of Great Andaman. It is popular with international tourists as it is among the few islands they can visit without permits. Also, it has Radha Nagar Beach, or Beach No 7, voted the best in Asia by Time magazine in 2004. It is also popular among those interested in scuba diving and snorkelling. There is a regular shuttle service from Port Blair which takes around four hours to reach Havelock.