Shimla: In an embarrassing turn for Operation Rahat in Himachal Pradesh, rescue helicopters deployed in Kinnaur to airlift stranded tourists are themselves stranded due to lack of fuel. Three days after the rains wreaked havoc in Himachal Pradesh, air sorties haven't started.
The two helicopters that were sent by the Centre, two days ago are standing idle. "We have fuel and we are ready to supply it. But they aren't taking it. They are saying they will be getting their own fuel. I do not know if that fuel belongs to the Army or the government," said Viresh Kumar, In-charge, Disaster Management Force.
Around 500 people were stranded in rain-ravaged Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh on Wednesday even as 77 people were evacuated from Sangla, Rekong Peo and Kaza while four more bodies were recovered from Pooh, raising the death toll to 14 in the state.
(With additional information from PTI)