J-K floods: Govt deploys successful Google app to find people

  • PTI, New Delhi
  • Updated: Sep 10, 2014 02:57 IST

Seeking to boost search and surveillance capabilities of rescue teams in flood-hit Jammu and Kashmir, a successful Uttarakhand 'Google' application is being pressed into service by the government.

The Google application called 'Person Finder' is a customized exclusive web application that allows individuals to post and search for the status of relatives or friends affected by a disaster.

NDRF director general OP Singh told PTI that they are in talks with Google authorities and the system is expected to be operationalised by Wednesday morning.

Sources privy to the development said Google has briefed the government that its 'open source' content has a lot of data and information on the locations and inhabitants of Jammu and Kashmir, especially in the Kashmir valley.

The rescue and disaster mitigation teams, sources said, are facing a number of odds in their task like bad communication network and high water level and this satellite-based application will strengthen their efforts to reach out to more victims of the worst-ever floods tragedy in the state.

Once updated and activated, search and rescue teams can use the 'Person Finder' to locate the people living in an area and deploy men and material to evacuate them from marooned locations.

"The platform had been very successful during last year's floods and heavy rains that had wreaked havoc in Uttarakhand.

Once activated, the web and SMS-based resource will bolster rescue teams of all the agencies like NDRF and IAF immensely," a senior officer of the security establishment said.

Under this smart application offered by the crisis response division of Google, all data entered into it is available to the public and searchable and accessible by anyone.

Once initiated, search and rescue teams of the National Disaster Response Force, IAF, Army and other civil aid authorities can use the database to reach more and more people who are stranded for the last few days and need immediate succour.

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