GUWAHATI, June 26 - The Indian Army is going to carry out a flood relief exercise in an urban setting along with other stakeholders here from June 28 to 30.
The objective is to get all stakeholders together and it will also include practising of drills to provide succour to people stranded due to abnormal flooding of areas, rescue of marooned groups of people, provision of immediate medical aid, setting up of relief camps, supply of relief materials to the affected populace and subsequent rehabilitation of flood-affected people.
�In the past few years, a large number of unexpected floods have been experienced in the major urban centres of the country, resulting in colossal damage to life and property. The devastation experienced by the citizens of Chennai in December last year is still fresh in the minds of the people. Not to go far, Guwahati has always been the epicentre of unexpected flooding in particular areas during periods of heavy rainfall during monsoons. This problem is likely to augment and assume colossal proportions in the future, keeping in view the rapid urbanisation, population pressure on the existing infrastructure and reducing or overly loaded drainage systems in the city,� a defence statement said.
The Rangiya-based Red Horn Division under the aegis of the Gajraj Corps of Army�s Eastern Command, with support from Headquarters Eastern Air and Eastern Naval Commands, 101 Area and Narangi-based 51 Sub Area, is all set to launch this mega exercise � Exercise Jalrahat, orchestrated by the Indian Army and Eastern Command to carry out realistic training in providing flood relief to the citizens of an urban centre like Guwahati.
Exercise Jalrahat will actively involve participation of State administration, National Disaster Relief Force units, Assam State Disaster Management Authority, Guwahati Municipal Corporation and paramilitary forces like CRPF and SSB.
Further, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), helicopters of the Indian Air Force and Army Aviation and divers from the Indian Navy and Elite Special Forces of the Indian Army will participate in the exercise to demonstrate use of potent capabilities and modern technology to assist in disaster management effort.
The UAVs will be used to detect people trapped in floodwaters and reconnaissance of flood-affected areas from an elevated platform, use of helicopters for rescue and relief operations and distribution of relief materials to inaccessible areas and the divers will lead the effort in rescuing people from the water.
The flood relief operations practised and validated during the course of this exercise will act as a readily available knowledge resource for execution of flood relief actions nationally along the length and breadth of the country and will act as ready material for periodical updating of the NDMP 2016.
�We cannot stop natural disasters, but we can arm ourselves with knowledge so that lives wouldn�t have to be lost if there is enough disaster preparedness,� the statement added.