GUWAHATI, Sept 13 � Around 160 people from Assam, who were stranded in Jammu and Kashmir due to the devastating floods, have been located, but the process of evacuation of all the stranded persons will take four to five more days. This was disclosed by Additional Director General of Assam Police R Chandranathan, who is camping in Srinagar to assist the people from the State to return safely.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Chandranathan said so far no report of casualty of anyone from Assam has been received from any part of the flood-hit State and a lady from the State has been admitted to a hospital as she is not keeping well.
Chandranathan revealed that all the communication lines are yet to be restored, which is turning out to be a major problem. He said that so far 160 persons from the State have been traced and efforts are on to trace the remaining ones as it is believed that around 200 persons are stranded, which include those who are working in that State.
The Indian Air Force has pressed into service its big aircraft used for transporting troops, to ferry stranded people from the Srinagar airport to places like Delhi, Jammu and Amritsar. Chandranathan said the Air Force is transporting around 2,000 stranded people every day, while those who can afford are also using the commercial planes to return to Delhi. However, the problem is that a majority of the people do not have enough money to travel by commercial flights and they have to depend on the Air Force planes to come out of Srinagar.
Another major problem is that the distance between the airport from Srinagar town is around 20 kilometres and the road is still submerged. People have to depend on the Air Force choppers to go to the airport.
Chandranathan said that 20,000 people are still taking shelter at Raj Bhawan, Srinagar and they are being shifted to the airport in a phased manner. He said that the family of one Dr Rafiqul Choudhury of Assam could not be shifted as his wife had to be hospitalised.
The Additional DG said that as a majority of the people from Assam exhausted all their money, special arrangements are being made in Delhi to assist them. A police officer posted in Delhi has been entrusted with the responsibility of receiving the people from Assam in the Delhi airport and to make arrangements for their stay in the national capital.
State government officials have also been directed to make arrangements for their return to Assam, if necessary.