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Army, NDRF teams plunge into rescue & relief work

The Army and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams were pressed into service on Saturday for rescue and relief work in the rain-affected parts of Hyderabad City, as continuing rain added to people’s woes. The Army and NDRF personnel swung into action in the worst-affected areas of Begumpet, Nizampet, Hakimpet and Alwal, where dozens of residential areas remained under water for the fourth consecutive day. Four columns of Army have been deployed in the affected areas. It has also set up a control room at the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) office.

The Defence Department said the Army, in coordination with the GHMC and NDRF officials, was closely monitoring the situation on the ground round-the-clock. It said the Army columns were already on track to provide relief material and medical aid in the slum areas of Alwal. Other columns have been kept standby, to be deployed when required.

There was no respite for flooded residential colonies in Alwal, Kukatpally, Miyapur, Nizampet and Begumpet, as rain continued to lash the city since Friday night. The local people saved 40 children when a school bus was stuck in flood water in Dharaninagar in Kukatpally on Saturday morning. The driver ignored the warning and tried to pass through the flood water, according to eye witnesses. The children belonged to a private school, which was open despite the government declaring a two-day holiday for all educational institutions in the city.

On the other hand, Deputy Chief Minister Kadiam Srihari said action would be taken against the schools, which remained open despite the government orders. Meanwhile, people in the inundated areas were facing shortage of food, drinking water and other essential items. Some non-governmental organisations were seen distributing food, milk and water packets. Over 200 apartments in Bhandari Layout in Nizampet on the city outskirts remained inundated for the fourth day. Many residents, the majority of them techies, have vacated their flats and moved to safer places.

Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister K.Tarakarama Rao and other Ministers and GHMC officials visited some of the areas late Friday night and Saturday morning. With the Met. Department office forecasting more rain over the next two days, the administration was on alert. Six teams of the NDRF, each comprising 40 personnel, have reached the city for rescue and relief operations. (NSS)