3 IAF chopper, 6100 personnel deployed for fight forest fire

NEW DELHI, May 1: More than 6,100 personnel, three IAF choppers fitted with Bambi bucket to carry water have been deployed in Uttarakhand to douse the forest fire that engulfed large part of the hill state.

As many as 6,000 personnel comprising NDRF, SDRF, state police, forest staff and volunteers have been deployed to douse the fire.

Three Indian Air Force helicopters (1 ALH and 2 Mi 17) with Bambi bucket and 116 rescuers of National Disaster Response Force were also deployed to help the State Government in controlling the situation.

The situation is under control now, a Home Ministry spokesperson said.

A four-member Central team of experts, including Special Director Centre for Fire Explosives K C Wadha and director of Delhi Fire Services G C Misra have reached Uttarakhand to assess the situation and suggest possible remedies.

In view of the urgency of the matter, the team will submit it’s report to the Home Ministry within a week with its recommendations.

Earlier in the day, Home Minister Rajnath Singh reviewed the forest fire situation with top officials of the Uttarakhand Government and assured them of all Central assistance.

Singh had yesterday spoken to Governor K K Paul, who briefed him about the prevailing crisis.

The three IAF choppers today dumped loads of water on forest fires raging for days in Nainital and Pauri districts in Uttarakhand.

The authorities claimed that the situation is gradually getting under control, latest satellite imagery of the forest fires has reported that the blaze has been extinguished in over 75 per cent of the affected area in the hill state.

The water sprinkling operations commenced today as part of efforts to douse the fires that has killed seven persons and destroyed 2,269 hectares of forested land. The fire has also spread to sparsely populated remote hill areas. (PTI)


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