New Delhi: An inter-ministerial team comprising senior officials from ministries of Home, Defence, External Affairs and NDMA today left for Nepal to coordinate rescue and relief operations in the quake-hit country. Headed by Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry B K Prasad, the team will also monitor the evacuation of stranded Indians in Nepal.
Sources said the team will coordinate with the Nepalese government in the salvage operation and assess the damage. It will send a report to New Delhi so that all help could be provided to the Himalayan nation on priority. The decision to send the high-level team was taken at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday.
India has scaled up relief and rescue operations in quake-hit Nepal, deploying over two dozen aircraft and choppers along with nearly 1000 trained personnel and said the situation in the Himalayan nation was “very, very serious”. A slew of steps have been taken for speedy evacuation of stranded tourists including goodwill visas to foreigners and mobilising of buses and ambulances to bring them by road. India has so far deployed 13 military aircraft, three civilian aircraft of Air India and Jet Airways, six Mi-17 helicopters, two Advanced Light Helicopters while two more Mi-17 choppers are kept in standby.
Ten tonnes of blankets, 50 tonnes of water, 22 tonnes of food items and two tonnes of medicines have been flown to Kathmandu.
Three army field hospitals and engineering task force and medical units of civilian doctors have been sent to Nepal.