Pune-headquartered Southern Command is co-ordinating the rescue operations carried out by the Indian Army in the Chennai floods. A press release from the Defence PRO said, “A critical situation has developed in Chennai region on either side of the Adyar river in Tamil Nadu due to heavy downpour from Monday. Despite suffering from the consequences of the flood situation themselves, the army has mobilised four columns equipped with assault boats and outboard motors in response to communication from civil authorities.”
The release further said, “These columns started their movement from Monday afternoon. The approach was severely restricted due to heavy traffic congestion on roads as a consequence of flood waters.
Reaching the affected areas in the middle of the night, the columns are answering distress calls from the worst affected population. These columns are presently carrying out relief work in Mudichur, Guduvancherry, Tambaram and Manipakkam areas. Attempts are being made to reach hospitals in this crisis situation.”
The release added, “The Army is in the process of mobilising additional troops for relief work. Three additional columns are underway from Bangalore garrison. Two more columns are standing by in Hyderabad. However, given the operational status of Chennai airport itself, neighbouring airports are being evaluated to airlift these columns since road and rail connectivity has been badly affected.”
The additional columns currently standing by in Hyderabad would be airlifted on Thursday by a special aircraft of the Indian Air Force. Approximately 2,100 people have been rescued so far during relief operations by the army.