Heavy overnight rains in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands disrupted normal life developing into flood-like situation in north and middle Andamans. Located about 40 km from state capital Port Blair, Havelock and Neil islands are the most popular tourist attractions of Andamans, and were the worst affected. Nearly 450 tourists at Havelock islands and 500 at Neil islands were stranded.
The Indian Air Force launched an evacuation operation for rescue of tourists stranded at Havelock and Neil Islands in Andamans. Three Helicopters (MI-17 V5) of Indian Air Force were pressed into service for the rescue operation. Total 14 sorties were carried out, 11 sorties from Havelock carrying 230 passengers and three sorties from Neil island carrying 65 passengers. A total of 295 tourists were rescued by Indian Air Force including 130 ladies, 24 children and 12 foreigners.
- Wg Cdr Rochelle D'Silva