You have made the country proud: PM to NDRF personnel in Turkey relief ops.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday interacted with the NDRF personnel who returned from Turkey after working in search and rescue operations there in the aftermath of the February 6 earthquake. Lauding the work of the unit, Modi said the NDRF should work towards being the best response force in the world.

Led by NDRF director general Atul Karwal, the 151 personnel along with other officials narrated their experiences of the operation to the Prime Minister. It was the first time since the 2015 Nepal earthquake that the NDRF had sent a team abroad for rescue work.

Modi shared his experience of working as a volunteer during the 2001 Gujarat earthquake. “In Bhuj, even the hospitals were full. I know how difficult it is to remove the debris or rescue people. I know the work and the courage one requires to work in such rescue operations. For this I want to salute you… The whole nation is proud of you,” he told the NDRF personnel.

Modi said the NDRF should document the learnings that its personnel had in Turkey. “I asked you about the work by other countries or the equipment they used during my interaction. You all have your own stories. You have seen the challenges that we should be prepared for and how to work on it. You have learnt many new things. All this should be documented,” he said.

Three NDRF teams were sent to Turkey under India’s Operation Dost. The force rescued two children, trapped for over 84 hours, after the earthquake and helped local authorities find at least 85 bodies.

The PM also lauded the work of the NDRF’s rescue dogs. Many stories were shared of the NDRF’s six dogs, Romeo, Julie, Bob, Roxy, Rambo and Honey, who assisted personnel in finding two girls – 6 and 8 years old – alive.

“You have made the country proud. Through your actions, you have proved that when any country needs help, India immediately steps up. Our country puts humanity first when any nation needs help. The swiftness with which the NDRF reached Turkey is inspiring. The whole country saw photographs of a mother blessing you and another photograph of you rescuing a minor girl. Your professionalism and service made us proud. I salute you,” Modi told the NDRF team.

During his interaction, Modi also said that not only is India self-sufficient but the country is also ahead in providing selfless service to other nations. He spoke about India’s role in helping people in Ukraine, Afghanisthan, Nepal and also the work of providing medicines and vaccines to countries.

“Whenever people outside see the Tricolour, they know India has arrived. There is hope that things will improve. Be it cyclone, floods or earthquake, NDRF is everywhere. Not only India but even people outside trust the sight of NDRF personnel on the ground. The hopes are high. This is a big achievement… We cannot stop here. We have to be the best in the world,” he added.

Source- Hindustan Times.

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