SC asks Centre, Uttarakhand to step up rescue operations

Published: 25th June 2013 01:35 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th June 2013 01:36 PM   |  A+A-

Supreme-Court
By PTI

The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the Centre and Uttarakhand government to step up rescue operations to evacuate people caught in flash floods in the state.

The Centre and state government, meanwhile, filed their action taken reports (ATR) in which they submitted that all possible efforts are being made by them to rescue the stranded people.

A bench of justices A K Patnaik and Ranjan Gogoi said the governments should consider the suggestions to be submitted by the petitioner who had moved the PIL for the rescue of people and posted the case for further hearing on June 28.

"In the meanwhile, step up your activities to rescue people," the bench said.

In its ATR, the Centre said a total of 1189 air sorties were done by the Indian Air Force while the Army has carried out 419 sorties.

By June 23, total 96,500 people were evacuated by all agencies and free transport is being arranged for all people to reach their respective destinations and more than 4000 vehicles have been deployed to bring the stranded people to Haridwar and Dehradun, the ATR said.

The report said that 80 per cent of telecommunication facilities have been restored and 77 satellite phones have been distributed by the Centre to various agencies.

The state, in its ATR, assured the court that evacuation of all stranded pilgrims would be completed within next 72 hours and said the death toll has been estimated at 560.

It said there is no shortage of food items and essential supplies in the disaster affected areas and 50,000 bottles of water and 50,000 packets of biscuits and 45,000 ready to eat food packets have been made available and the government is organising relief camps for the disaster affected people at 62 different places.

The report said, that approximately four lakh chlorine tablets have been distributed in the affected districts and another five lakh would be sent in another two days.

The PIL was filed by lawyer Ajay Bansal, who has sought the apex court's directions to the Centre and state government to rescue people stranded in the flood hit areas in Uttarakhand.

Earlier, on June 20, the court had directed the Centre and the state to make all out efforts to rescue the thousands of people stranded there and to provide them food and drinking water.

It had also directed the governments to to deploy sufficient number of helicopters to rescue flood-affected people in the area.

The bench had also asked the Centre and National Disaster Management Authority to provide all required resources to the state government and to file action taken reports.

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