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17 military helicopters deployed to douse Uttarakhand forest fires

 2016-05-01 09:42:15.0

uttakahnad-forest-fire-180x120Tahlka news Bureau,

Dehradun:�With nearly six people killed and a large forest area burnt to ashes in Uttarakhand, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is taking help of Indian Army�s MI-17 helicopters to douse the fire.

The helicopters are taking water from dams and lakes and heading to areas worst affected by blaze.

The fire affected areas include Nainital, Almora, Pithoragarh and Bageshwar.

Since the beginning of forest fire incidents in the state in early February this year, 922 incidents have occurred so far killing six people including three women and a child, in separate incidents, injuring seven and blighting 1890.79 hectares of green cover, Principal Conservator of Forest (Research) B P Gupta.

Rudraprayag forest division is taking the army's help for fire-fighting operations especially along the highways, Gupta said.

Chamoli, Pauri, Rudraprayag, Tehri, Uttarkashi, Pithoragarh, Almora and Nainital are the worst-affected districts, he said.

The casualties due to forest fires which have spread to sparsely-populated remote hill areas, rose to six with another life lost in Nainital district on Friday evening.

1890.79 hectares of green cover have been destroyed by the fires which had an early start on February 2 this year due to a dry winter.

Governor K K Paul reviewed the rescue efforts underway via videoconferencing with officials in the field and asked them to speed up their efforts.

NDRF companies, assisted by expert teams and locals, are conducting fire-fighting and rescue operations in Garhwal and Kumaon regions.

IG Sanjay Gunjyal is cordinating with NDRF, District Magistrates concerned and the Principal Conservator of Forest to supervise the rescue operations.

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