NEW DELHI: The Indian Air Force has recused 21 people stranded on islets in the swollen Beas river in Himachal Pradesh over the last two days, officials said.
On Sunday, a request was received at Sarsawa Airforce Station at around 2:30 pm from the Himachal Pradesh government to rescue its personnel struck due to incessant rains in Kullu.
Heavy rains and flash floods have disrupted normal life in parts of Himachal Pradesh.
The Beas river had swelled and people were stranded on islets, the Air Force said in a statement.
One Medium Lift Helicopter was launched from the 'Mighty Armour' unit of Western Air Command based at Sarsawa.
"The helicopter was piloted by Squadron Leaders Vipul Gupta and Dhiman was the co-pilot. The helicopter reached the spot and found 19 people stranded on an islet on the Beas river. The pilot brought the helicopter to a low hover and the crew helped the stranded people into the aircraft. They were then flown to the local airfield of Bhuntar," the statement said.
On Monday, two youths were spotted on another small strip of land in the river.
The helicopter, which was available at Bhuntar, was launched and the two persons were winched up since there was no place for the helicopter to land, the Air Force said.
The helicopter and its crew have been instructed to wait at Bhuntar airstrip should any other rescue is required.
"Today restricted space, high winds speed, high tension cables and tall trees precluded the chance of landing hence we had to winch the two people.
All rescued were reported to be safe and fine. We are on standby for any further requirements," Gupta said.