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Air force medical team ready for battle

- State-of-the-art aircraft lands to prevent inundation casualties

An aircraft of rapid action medical team arrived at Chunapur air force station on Sunday evening, expecting the flood-like situation in the Kosi and its tributaries in seven districts in northern part of the state, which are on high alert at present.

Indian Air Force (IAF) has recently included the aircraft Globemaster-III C-17, which is highly equipped with medical facilities of latest technologies.

The aircraft includes a medical team of 24 members having expertise of various medical fields. This aircraft was recently purchased from the US before it was included in the IAF.

The Globemaster-III C-17 is well-equipped with medical tools and able to set up a full-fledged air-conditioned hospital at any required spot in case of emergency. It is ready to render its services wherever is required to tackle medical needs if flood-like situation arises in seven districts — Madhubani, Supaul, Saharsa, Madhepura, Khagaria, Katihar and Araria.

Wing Commander Nishant Sharma at Chunapur told The Telegraph: “Globemaster-III C-17, which was recently inducted in the IAF, landed at our airbase on Sunday evening. This aircraft, along with a 24-member medical team, has landed to conduct rescue operations if required in the Kosi region.”

Sharma said: “This aircraft is able to set up an air-conditioned hospital at any place and provide medical facilities to people. All the members, including doctors and auxiliary staff, are quite efficient in tackling any untoward incident. This becomes a portable hospital as it can be sent anywhere as per requirement. Apart from that, we have kept our air force station on high alert for 24 hours and the airport has been made operational round the clock. We have kept four helicopters in reserve so that emergency services if they come we would be able to manage them.”

Purnea district magistrate Arvind Kumar Singh said: “With Wing Commander Sharma, we conducted an aerial survey of the Kosi basin of Madhubani, Saharsa, Supaul, and Madhepura to keep watch on the expected flood in the river that might affect the adjacent areas in Madhepura and Saharsa districts. We are ready to work in close co-ordination with the IAF, as it is ready to help whenever required. We found no threat in Purnea and the situation is normal almost everywhere so far.”

Singh said: “We have set up 11 relief camps in the Banmankhi area of the district, about 350km northeast of Patna, while only four camps have been made operational yet. These camps have capacity of 40,000 people to be given shelter in emergency. There is no need to be panicky in Purnea district but we have made camps so that relief work could be started soon.”