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NDRF was first among international teams to reach Turkey: NDRF DG Atul Karwal
New Delhi: The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team is one of the international teams who reached the earthquake-hit Turkey first for relief and rescue under 'Operation Dost', NDRF DG Atul Karwal said on Tuesday.
Speaking to ANI, Karwal said that "The first challenge was how soon we can mobilize our teams and reach Turkey as our aim was to reach there as soon as possible to save more people's lives." "We had the full support of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The Prime Minister's Office held a meeting and instructed us to go there, we prepared ourselves immediately. Our official passports were made on the same day and till late evening the office was kept open. Indian Air Force picked up our team from Kolkata and brought us to Delhi to get a visa. ITBP provided us with winter clothing and whatever we could anticipate might be needed we got without delay of one minute," Karwal said.
Karwal further said, that out of all the international teams that reached Turkey, our team was the first team that reached there.
"The ability of NDRF is that we give the training to bear the hardships and how to live in such situations of the earthquake. We were deployed in Noortak and Antakya where the earthquake affected badly and people needed help," Karwal said.
He further told that the biggest problem was the problem of language there as they could not understand our language and point of view, and we could not understand their language and point of view, but we are being trained like this, so we were able to manage everything.
"A total of 85 dead bodies were recovered by the NDRF that were buried in the building. We were also able to rescue the two girls alive" he added.
He further said that the locals there gave them a lot of respect. The local people were suffering from food problems but they used to arrange some food and tea for our teams with great love. When the NDRF team was coming from there many people clapped and encouraged us.
"Many local people of Turkey wanted to give something to NDRF rescuers to keep the bond between the two countries alive" he added. (ANI)