NEW DELHI: Julie, Romio, Honey and Rambo — a four-member dog squad — are engaged in rescue operations in earthquake-hit Turkey with their 101-member male colleagues of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).
The specially trained Labrador breed dog squad, which is an expert in sniffing and other key skills during rescue operations in disaster-hit regions, left India on Tuesday for Turkey with two separate teams of NDRF — a 51-member team which arrived there in the morning and another 50-member team which reached by the evening.
The dog squad is undertaking search and rescue operations in the affected areas of Turkey which have been devastated on Monday by massive earthquakes.
NDRF Director General Atul Karwal told ANI that the dog squad of the force and the 101 team members are self-contained in all respect and are equipped with all the necessary state-of-the-art search and rescue, and personal safety equipment.
The NDRF team will assist the local authorities of Turkey in relief and rescue operations as per the need, said the officer.
The movement of India’s rescue team followed a direction by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and two teams consisting of 101 personnel of NDRF along with specially trained dog squads and all the necessary equipment were sent to Turkey by special Indian Air Force flights.
The contingent of NDRF is led by Commandant Gurminder Singh along with doctors and paramedics for providing necessary assistance.
Ministry of Home Affairs on Tuesday said the Government of India is committed to providing all necessary assistance in this crisis situation to the Government of Turkey to cope with the earthquake.
Acclaimed globally after Japan’s triple disaster in 2011 and the Nepal earthquake in 2015, the NDRF has been tasked 4th time since its inception to handle a tragic massive earthquake in Turkey, which has claimed over 5,000 lives so far.
Always led from the front by displaying a high level of dedication and commitment, the NDRF, which was constituted in 2006, was first time sent for an international rescue operation in Japan in 2011 to help the country facing triple disaster, followed by Bhutan river rescue operation in 2014 and Nepal earthquake in 2015, NDRF DIG Mohsen Shahidi told ANI.
This is the fourth international disaster rescue operation which the NDRF team has been tasked to help earthquake-hit Turkey.
A massive earthquake, 7.8 magnitudes on Richter Scale, ripped through Turkey and Syria on February 6, followed by a series of earthquakes causing huge devastation, loss of lives and damage to infrastructure in both countries and media reports of over 5,000 people lost their lives. (ANI)