KATHMANDU: As Nepal is battling to deal with the earthquake tragedy that struck yesterday, India sent 348-member search and rescue team, including three sniffer dogs to Nepal, the largest rescue team as far as foreign rescue teams are concerned. According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, India also sent four aircraft with rescue materials.Nepali Army Spokesperson Brigadier General Jagadish Chandra Pokhrel said at a press conference here today that India had pledged 14 rescue helicopters of which six landed in Kathmandu today. India also sent two special trucks, one excavator, one loader, one Maruti Gypsy and one generator. Indian rescue teams are working in seven groups. Similarly Pakistan and Sri Lanka each sent 48-member search and rescue team to Nepal. A 69-member rescue team from China arrived in Kathmandu today. Similarly a 59-member Turkish rescue team, seven-member Israeli rescue team and a 30-member Bangladeshi rescue team also landed in Kathmandu. According to army sources, 80-member search and rescue team from Poland has already left for Kathmandu and a 70-member American rescue team is scheduled to arrive in Kathmandu on Monday. According to Ministry of Home Affairs, Indian and Pakistani rescue teams have been deployed in Bhaktapur. Rescue teams from Turkey, China, Israel and Bangladesh have been deployed in Kathmandu valley. Nepali Army Spokes-person Pokhrel said army personnel were trying their best to rescue people from the rubble. “Although we have enough human resource to carry out search and rescue operation, we lack cutting equipment,” he added. Other work, including clearing of debris, would be carried out in the second phase, he added. “First and foremost thing is to search and rescue the trapped people and we are doing that,” Pokhrel said. Nepali Army has told all its personnel, even those who are on leave, to report for duty so that they could be deployed for rescue and relief work. “Only 10 per cent of army personnel will remain in the barracks, as that is the standard rule but if any commander wants to reduce this percentage so as to maximise rescue and rehabilitation efforts, we will consider their proposals positively,” Pokhrel added. Pokhrel said six Nepali Army personnel were killed in yesterday’s quake. Pokhrel said Nepali Army would coordinate with the foreign military rescue team and would direct them to provide the kind of help Nepal expects from them at this hour. “We are a sovereign nation and we as country’s army have a duty to coordinate with foreign military rescue teams,” Pokhrel added.
India sends largest rescue contingent
Published: 12:00 am Apr 27, 2015