J&K floods: Army rescues 11,000 people, 100 columns deployed

As Jammu and Kashmir faced the worst flood in nearly six decades, Army has launched a major rescue operation and evacuated 11,000 people to safety by deploying 100 columns of troops in flood-hit areas of the state.

PTI| Updated: Sep 07, 2014, 01:25 AM IST

Jammu: As Jammu and Kashmir faced the worst flood in nearly six decades, Army has launched a major rescue operation and evacuated 11,000 people to safety by deploying 100 columns of troops in flood-hit areas of the state.

"A total of 11,000 civilians have been rescued, out of these 2,000 people have been provided food and temporary shelter in Jammu and Kashmir," Defence spokesman S D Goswami said tonight.

A total of 100 columns of army, 13 teams of Army engineers have been deployed in the Kashmir and Jammu regions, he said. One army column consists of 75 to 100 troops.

So far, 107 people have lost their lives in flooding, landslides and house collapses in the state.

Army has intensified its 'Mission Sahayata' and troops are working tirelessly to rescue people trapped in flooded villages, isolated houses and multi-storied buildings in the inundated areas all over Kashmir, Goswami said.

As the number of shelter less people is rising, Army is also providing tented accommodation to hundreds of people, he added.

The major flood rescue operations started on September 2. Later, 'Mission Sahayata' was launched to cover areas of the entire Valley, he said.

By September 4, eight major columns were put to service, Col Goswami said adding that over 400 people were taken to safety. "In addition to these, large number of people were assisted to relocate themselves, many vehicles stuck inside water were recovered and food packets were distributed," he said.

By September 5, there were 70 major columns and 12 engineer teams operating in Kashmir and by the night over 5,000 people were rescued.

On September 6, a column of Army operating at Kakapora of Pulwama district became a victim of the flood. A boat carrying 11 personnel capsized and they got stranded, he said.

Nine soldiers were rescued.

"Till filing of this report, two soldiers are still stranded in the area," he said.

"In Kashmir, hundreds of families that moved to upper stories of their houses due to inundation of ground floor, are yet to be reached.

"Joint Control Room and helpline centres established by Army in Kashmir are getting frantic calls from people and dispatching columns to rescue them," he said.

On September 6, on a request of the civil administration, Army is providing 50 tents in the Noorbagh area of Safakadal to accommodate hundreds of people stranded due to the floods, he said.

The columns, headed by Junior Commissioner Officers (JCOs) is deployed in most of the affected areas of Kashmir Valley, particularly in worst affected Central Kashmir's Srinagar and South Kashmir.

Authorities continue to sound high flood alert as most of the rivers in the state are flowing above the danger mark due to incessant rains since the night of September 2.