NGO seeks public help in Leh relief work

August 8th, 2010 - 7:39 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 8 (IANS) Relief material like blankets and household utility kits are urgently required in Jammu and Kashmir’s Leh town where thousands of people have been hit by flash floods, NGO Save the Children said Sunday, seeking public help.
Over 500 people were missing and 400 were injured in the disaster after Friday’s cloudburst that caused flash floods in Leh town, leading to widespread destruction and claiming 132 lives. So far 63 bodies have been identified.

“About 5,000 blankets are required immediately to keep people warm, particularly children as homes have been damaged and the weather conditions are poor,” said Thomas Chandy, chief executive officer, Save the Children.

“About 5,000 household and hygiene kits are required. Tarpaulins and medical assistance are some of the other critical needs of the victims,” he said.

The NGO appealed to the public to come forward and strengthen their relief efforts as the immediate and short-term needs of the affected people were huge.

Save the Children is coordinating relief efforts with international medical humanitarian NGO Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) and local NGOs in Leh.

“Together with MSF, we are dispatching supplies of blankets and hygiene kits to Leh. We are air-lifting the much-needed supplies to the affected region, Jet Airways and Kingfisher airlines are involved in the flight services,” Chandy said.

To lend a helping hand or to donate one can call or SMS +91 8898619953 and +91 9811320906. Or one can go to www.savethechildren.in.

Leh is 434 km from Srinagar and 474 km from Manali in Himachal Pradesh to which it is connected through an alternative highway.

The cloudburst occurred at Choglamsar village, which is situated above Leh town.

The cloudburst, flash floods and mudslides that hit Leh town around midnight Friday washed away government offices, paramilitary camps and residential homes.

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