Wednesday, January 31, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Armed forces continue work
From Girja Shankar Kaura and Gaurav Choudhury
Tribune News Service

NEW DELHI, Jan 30 — Relief and rescue operations by the Indian Armed Forces continued in full swing today in quake-devastated Gujarat even as the death toll continues to mount.

As many as 20,000 troops are being deployed to carry out ‘Operation Sahayata’, the largest ever relief operation to be undertaken in the world.

Military personnel continued to extricate people trapped under the debris after the devastating quake of Friday while providing round-the-clock medical cover in the military hospital in Bhuj.

The medical teams of Army have so far performed more than 10,000 surgeries, including 1,700 major ones, at seven mobile hospital ( field ambulances) and two static military hospitals.

Relief operations by the Indian Navy continued with patients being admitted to the Naval ships turned hospital ships INS Nirdeshak and INS Jamuna.

The Indian Coast Guards has deployed two ships, four Donier aircraft and one helicopter for this assignment besides a number of Coast Guard personnel.

Ship ‘Vijaya’ has been converted into a floating hospital at Kandla Port and has provided medical aid to a number of injured persons.

It is also assisting port authorities in manning essential services and rendering services to the civil authorities in rescue and supply of food provisions at Gandhidhram and Anjar.

Another ship,’Veera,’ which left Mumbai yesterday carrying food and clothing is expected to reach Kandla Port tomorrow.

Meanwhile, four days after a devastating earthquake played havoc with country’s busiest port at Kandla in Gujarat, operations have been partially resumed, but berthing problems persisted with normal functioning expected to be resumed by late next week. 


Budget will be harsh: PM

LUCKNOW, Jan 30 (PTI) — Prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee today said the coming budget would be harsh and people should be prepared for fresh taxes in the wake of devastating earthquake in Gujarat.

Mr Vajpayee told reporters here he was confident the people would happily shoulder the burden of fresh taxes in view of natural calamities of drought, floods and now an earthquake.

The budget session of parliament will begin on February 19 with president K.R Narayanan addressing both houses on the opening day.Back

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