HDC braves Kashmir’s historic floods
- After rescue, now busy with relief work:-
At a time when people were fleeing their houses for safety from the devastating floodwater, Hope Disability Centre (HDC) embarked on a rescue mission.
The HDC team lead by its Executive Director rescued more than 300 people in first three days of their rescue operation.
“The day (7th september 2014) when entire Kashmir was getting submerged into ravaging Jhelum river water, I decided to visit Srinagar to assess the situation. However, seeing the magnitude of disaster, I could not hold back. There and then I decided to start a rescue operation,” HDC Executive Director Sami Wani says.
Wani along with his colleague from partner organization arranged for the 10 wooden and three motorized boats to rescue the people stuck in the various places at Rajbagh, Jawarharnagar, Bemina, Ikharpora and Chattabal.
The NGO with its collective effort managed to save more than 300 human lives.
“While carrying on unabated rescue mission till 10 pm for two days, I preferred to sleep in my motorized rescue boat rather than to return to home,” recollects Sami Wani, whose family was praying for his life as they had no information of his well-being.
Since 8th September HDC apart from rescuing people, also started distribution of relief material.
“While rescuing people we realized the shortage of relief material. Therefore, with rescue mission going on, we simultaneously started distribution of relief,” says, Tawseef Ahmad, HDC P&O bench worker, who previously worked as community worker, for more than three years.
HDC along with its staff members, who themselves were caught by the floods and were busy collecting relief for the devastated in their areas,embarked to carry out both rescue and relief missions hand in hand.
“Apart from providing relief supplies to various relief camps at many places, we ourselves distributed drinking water, blankets, rice biscuits, chips, lentils, candles, match boxes, baby food, and medicine to many caught by the devastation,” HDC accountant Bilal Ahmad said.
The NGO also coordinated with Doctors Association of Kashmir to organize medical camps at Hazaratbal, and later in Rajbagh.
Free medicines and chlorine tablets were also distributed at four different camps at Saidakadal, Nowakadal, NIT Hazaratbal, and Rajbagh.
Now HDC apart from carrying on with its relief mission is intending to start the rehabilitation for the ones who have lost their houses and other properties.
In this regard, HDC along with its partner organization Handicap International and some other international NGOs and some local NGOs also formulated a team which did a survey of badly affected places in Kashmir. The reason to conduct this joint survey was to get a collective data and assess the amount of damage people suffered in these floods.
According to recent news reports, the Jammu and Kashmir infrastructural loss is more than a trillion. This in itself is an indication of the magnitude of the devastation the floods carried.