Keylong: Himachal Pradesh Government on Sunday has deployed a newly acquired state helicopter for evacuating stranded persons, including tourists, from the flood-hit Pattan valley of the Lahaul-Spiti district.

The rescue and relief operation with the help of helicopter service was started Sunday morning as the first flight was conducted from Baring to Tandi helipad, near district headquarters Keylong in Lahaul Spiti, to evacuate eight people, including a pregnant woman.

As per the information, 19 people have been evacuated in two sorties so far.

As many as 66 people were stranded at different locations under the Udaipur subdivision till Saturday, while over 300 had already been evacuated by the district administration.

After failing to evacuate all stranded persons at the hinterland Lahaul-Spiti district for five days after roads closed down due to flash floods, the district administration had demanded a helicopter for the evacuation of stranded persons. Acting on the demand, the state government deployed the newly acquired helicopter for the evacuation.

In its day-long sorties, the chopper is expected to evacuate almost all stranded people from Tandi and would drop them at Kullu from where they would be sent to their destinations in public transport by road.

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Rahul Bhandari is Editor of TheNewsHimachal and has been part of the digital world for last 15 years.