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Heroes: J & K Floods: The Unsung Heroes of Rescue Operations - 4

The previous part is here - Part 3

The two army jawans, who were washed away in the floods during rescue operations in Pulwama in south Kashmir on September 7, were declared dead on Saturday. Naik Khem Chandra, 38, of 20 Kumaon Regiment and Rifleman Mir Owaisi Hussain, 24, of 15 Jakli Regiment, had gone missing days ago. They were part of a team of army personnel, which was on relief and rescue operation in Pampore. Their boat capsized and they got trapped in the strong currents of Jhelum river. A langar was sent from the Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport at Rajasansi by a regular flight of SpiceJet airways. SGPC sewadars were on board.The food items were prepared by devotees at the Sri Guru Ram Das langar of the Golden Temple, gurdwara Ber Baba Buddhaji near Chabal (Amritsar) and gurdwaras in Khadoor Sahib, Goindwal Sahib and Tarn Taran. Devotees remained busy all night at these shrines, preparing the langar.Confirming the dispatch, SGPC publicity in-charge Kulwinder Singh told HT that 25,000 food packets were prepared at the Golden Temple and other shrines. Each packet, wrapped in aluminium foil, contained four large-sized paranthas prepared in desi ghee, besides cooked vegetables such as potatoes and pickle. He said each packet had sufficient food to feed two persons.This exercise will continue every day, with the number of packets likely to increase,” he added, referring to SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar’s statement that help to J&K flood victims would continue till the situation normalised.The entire SGPC staff has decided to donate their two-day salary of the current month to the J&K government’s flood relief fund. Meanwhile, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has indicated that it might spare a cargo plane for the SGPC for airlifting relief material to Srinagar.

Sometimes it takes a natural disaster to bring out the best in oneself. Take the case of these two doctors from Jammu and Udhampur who exhibited the highest degree of selflessness during the recent devastating floods in Jammu & Kashmir. Clearly they are unsung heroes for their actions show immense courage as well as conviction. Before leaving for Srinagar from Jammu, the two doctors had no inkling of what destiny had in store for them. Dr Subhash Chandra Abrol and Dr K C Sharma, from Jammu and Udhampur respectively, left Jammu for Srinagar through the picturesque Jammu-Srinagar highway on September 4 to attend JAKASICON (Jammu and Kashmir chapter of Association of Surgeons of India) conference, at which Dr Abrol was to get an award.

Soon after reaching Qazigund in the evening they got to know that the road between Srinagar and Anantnag in south Kashmir was flooded. "We could not find a single hotel to stay in Qazigund because all the hotels in the town were occupied. The very next day we reached the newly-built Emergency Hospital in Qazigund and offered our services to the hospital superintendent Dr Mirji Indrabi as the hospital was short off staff," said Dr Abrol. During their three-day ordeal in the hospital both the doctors took it upon themselves to look after each patient, at a time when the hospital as well as the city was completely cut off from the outside world. Talking about the ordeal Dr KC Sharma said, "We decided to do something for the people in distress as I knew how bad the situation was; I myself saw trees being uprooted by the strong current. Our call of conscience made us stay in the hospital and serve as much as we could." The doctors even conducted four caesarian operations and other procedures, thus, saving twelve precious lives with the help of the medical superintendent and the skeleton staff that was present. They also conducted free consultation for eight days (September 4-11). Both the surgeons, in the absence of any anesthetist and ultrasonologist, did all the three jobs themselves.

"All the four ladies who underwent ceasarian operations had to be operated upon right away. The most touching was the cry of Meema Begum whose husband was in the Border Security Force (BSF) and away from his home in Kolkata," said Dr Sharma. Manwhile, the news of the two doctors from Jammu staying in Qazigund's Emergency Hospital spread around and people from nearby villages started to flock the hospital for treatment. After staying in Qazigund for 5 days the doctors finally decided to get back to Jammu. They left their car in Qazigund and took an ambulance till Ramsu near Banihal. "We had to trek uphill to cross to the other side of the Banihal Pass so thatwe could get back to Jammu," said Dr KC Sharma.

Talking to TOI Dr Abrol said, "Despite not being able to reach Srinagar for the prestigious conference the eternal sense of satisfaction which I had after helping the people in distress was something which no award in the world can match. Those five days were the most memorable days of our lives." "There is no measure which can gauge the pleasure received in saving all the twelve lives and watching smiles on their faces and listening to the thanks of their relatives," said Dr KC Sharma.

The concluding part is here
Heroes: J & K Floods: The Unsung Heroes of Rescue Operations - 4 Heroes: J & K Floods: The Unsung Heroes of Rescue Operations - 4 Reviewed by Shwetabh on 11:08:00 AM Rating: 5

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