A frantic call from relatives of a three-month-old Aiza Faheem, stuck with her grandparents at an uptown locality in Srinagar on Friday night, made chief minister Omar Abdullah stay back till the morning to ensure the baby was rescued.
At around 11:30 pm, the chief minister was stopped by the baby’s aunt, who was trapped in a house submerged in flood at Srinagar’s Baghat area.
“Around 10:30 pm, the flood water level was just around five feet near the house. But by 11.30 pm, one entire floor was submerged. My crying wife caught the attention of Omar sahib,” Shabir Gojwari, the baby’s uncle, told HT.
The baby’s parents were in Delhi when the incident occurred. Omar oversaw the rescue operation along with other officials.
“Omar sahib assured that he will not leave the place till the baby was rescued,” said Gojwari.
It took the team three hours to rescue the baby. “The chief minister left around 3 am in the morning only after the baby was rescued,” said Gojwari.
In the nocturnal operation, the rescue team saved 60 people in uptown Srinagar. Two families stuck in their cars were also saved by timely intervention of the rescue teams, reporting to the chief minister directly.
Meanwhile, the flood toll has risen to 88, with 68 more deaths reported on Friday, mainly from Rajouri and Poonch districts.
The Army spokesperson said that nearly 1,000 people had been rescued from affected areas.
This is one of the worst floods experienced in Jammu and Kashmir, with experts predicting that the rains are not likely to hold up for the next two days.
According to experts, this is the worst flooding in the state for the last 82 years.