Operation Maitri and more: How exactly is India helping quake-strickenNepal?

On Saturday, a shift in tectonic plates,approximately nine miles below the earth surface, unleashed enormous amount of seismic energy. This energy can be compared to a combined explosion of 20 thermonuclear weapons. The outcome turned Kathmandu into ruins, killing about 33,000 people, while rescue operations still recovering bodies buried under rubble. Nature did showoff that it created life, and it can wipe it out in the blink of an eye. Nepal army has only one helicopter to its name which is a clear explanation to why it needs the rest of the world to come forward for relief effort and supplies.

Operation Maitri  (1)

Image Source : IndiaTimes.Com

As a responsible neighbor, India responded quickly and four Indian Air Force transport aircraft carrying doctors, medics and supplies with a team of over 400 members of Indian National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF)were sent to Nepal on Saturday itself. However, India is doing more than just initial help. Let’s take a closer look at how exactly India is helping grief-stricken Nepal.

Immediate action from India’s National Disaster Relief Force

Soon after the quake hit Nepal on Saturday, four Indian aircrafts landed at the only International airport of Nepal – Kathmandu airport. The aircrafts carried about 400 disaster-response personnel along with a mobile hospital. The Initial response ensured more aircrafts with food, medical supplies and rescue equipments. Later, in addition to 10teams already present in Nepal, India sent six more teams of the National Disaster Response Force. Four IAF MI 17 helicopters were deployed for rescue work.

NDRF has also deployed 33 vehicles to transport injured victims to hospitals. So far, 50 tonnes of water, 10 tonnes of blankets, and 22 tonnes of edibles has been delivered to Nepal.

Indian IAF Evacuation and Ongoing Rescue Operation Maitari

Operation Maitri  (3)

Image Source : Ste.India.Com

The IAF’s C-17 Globemasters jet that had pulled off a great rescue job by airlifting thousands of Indians from war-hit Yemen proved to be a great asset for India yet again. IAF has so far rescued and evacuated about 2,000 Indians from Nepal despite bad weather conditions. This evacuation mission is named as Maitari (amity). Further, the IAF has utilized 12 aircraft sorties for the rescue of locals.

In total, India has sent 13 military aircrafts, three civilian aircrafts of Air India and Jet Airways, six Mi-17 helicopters, and two Advanced Light Helicopters to the quake-hit neighboring nation. Two Mi-17 choppers are on standby, just in case situation worsens.

UAVs or unmanned aerial vehicles to map out destruction and locate survivors

The improvised Nepal has suffered complete loss of communication lines encumbering rescue operations and relief management in the country. The Nepalese authorities don’t even know where and what structures have collapsed under such circumstances. Therefore, to map the aftermaths of earthquake, India is sending UAVs to Kathmandu. The drones are under the command of NDRF and will also aid in locating survivors in collapsed structures, and peep through balconies or windows for trapped victims inside partially damaged buildings.

A team of top government officials for monitoring rescue ops from Ground Zero

Operation Maitri  (2)

Image Source : IndiaTvNews.Com

India has sent a team comprising of inter-ministerial senior officials from Ministry of Home, Defense, External Affairs and NDMAto monitor the rescue operations from ground zero. The team is led by BK Prasad, the Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry. The team will co-ordinate with the Nepal governmentfor effective rescue and evacuation operations.

Relief supplies from State governments

In addition to the Union Government, state governments have also come forward to aid quake survivors facing health, water and food crisis. The Delhi government has announced a relief package containing 25,000 packets of food and 25 pouches of relief material for quake-hit Nepal. Tihar prison also dispatched 1,750 kg of biscuit through AIF.

Gurjarat Chief Minister also announced 25,000 food packets to Nepal in coordination with Centre’s National Disaster Management Authority.

First 72 hours of such rescue operations are always crucial, because survivors rarely stand any chance after that. The Prime Minister of India, Narender Modi, has further ensured every possible assistance to Nepal in the hour of emergency. In addition to a number of organizations from around the world, China, US, Pakistan, Japan, etc., have also released relief packagesto the nation hit by Saturday’s killer quake.

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