Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Government on Sunday organised a formal farewell function in honour of various Central Forces which played a pivotal role in the rescue and relief operations in flood hit Kerala.
"We could directly witness the bold initiatives they took to rescue those who were stranded in the flood waters', Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said at the function held at the Air Force Station here.
Pinarayi Vijayan also appreciated the services of the military and paramilitary forces, who saved the helpless, braving adverse circumstances. "All that we can say is that your services will be kept in mind in the times to come with gratitude and appreciation', he said, adding the calamity would have been greater had the Forces not worked hand in hand with the state government.
Citations were presented by the Chief Minister to Air Marshal B Suresh, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Southern Air Command, Rear Admiral R J Nadkarni, Chief Of Staff, Southern Naval Command, Brigadier C G Arun, Station Commander, Pangode Military station and Rekha Nambiar, NDRF Commandant. Sanatan Jena, DIG Coast Guard, Giriprasad, IG, CRPF, B C Nair DIG Border Security Force (BSF), Vishal Anand Commandant ITBF and Dhanya Sanal, Defence PRO and all military and paramilitaryforces who participated in the rescue operations were also given the citations, a government release said.
Air Marshal Suresh said they could act efficiently because of the clear directions given by the Chief Minister. "CM was leading from the front', he said and also lauded the services of fishermen and volunteers who were part of the rescue and relief operations. The devastation caused due to the rains and floods has claimed 302 lives so far and destroyed homes and infrastructure.
Earlier, the government had also in a goodwill gesture thanked fishermen who took part in rescue operations. PTI