Army felicitates government officials for assisting in rescue operations during helicopter crash

Lieutenant General A. Arun, General Officer Commanding, Dakshin Bharat Area, felicitated members of various government departments; the adoption of the villagers of Nanjappa Sathiram by Headquarters, Dakshin Bharat Area was also announced

Lieutenant General A. Arun, General Officer Commanding, Dakshin Bharat Area, felicitated the police, fire and rescue service personnel, forest staff and members of other government departments as well as Army personnel for their efforts in rescuing people from the wreckage of the helicopter crash in Kattery, Coonoor, which resulted in the deaths of CDS General Bipin Rawat and 12 others.

Lt. Gen. Arun, who visited the Shrinagesh Barracks in Wellington, Coonoor on Monday, spoke at the event. He said that “such a calamity should never have to be witnessed by anyone, but unfortunately, these are events that sometimes happen.” He praised the State government and Chief Minister M.K.Stalin for their immediate assistance in offering to help in whatever way was possible in the aftermath of the crash that occurred on Wednesday.

Praise for village residents

The Lieutenant General also had words of praise for the residents of Nanjappa Sathiram in Kattery. “These people were the first responders to the accident site, and brought their own household items to help douse the flames and carry the mortal remains of the officers from the wreckage as well as the officer who survived and who is recuperating in hospital,” he said.

Mr. Arun felicitated personnel from the fire and rescue service, A.K. Nagarajan (Assistant District Fire Officer), forest department, S.M. Sasikumar (Coonoor Forest Range Officer), L. Dinesh Kumar, (tahsildar, Coonoor), A. Mohanraj (line inspector from the TNEB), N. Manimegala (village health nurse), as well as officials from the health department, police and district administration including Nilgiris collector S.P. Amrith and Superintendent of Police, Ashish Rawat.

Cash rewards to residents

Following the felicitation programme in Wellington, Mr. Arun visited the settlement of Nanjappa Sathiram in Kattery – the site of the crash. He spoke to residents and handed over cash rewards of Rs. 5,000 each to two persons who first witnessed the crash and immediately notified the police and fire and rescue services. He also promised that the Army would send over a doctor as well as a nurse to the village each month for regular health check-ups for local residents, while residents from the settlement could also visit the military hospital in Wellington for consultation, which will be free of charge for them, he said.

“The general officer distributed blankets, solar emergency lights and rations to the villagers and announced the adoption of the villagers of Nanjappa Sathiram by Headquarters, Dakshin Bharat Area,” a press release from the Madras Regimental Center (MRC) said.

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