The people of Jammu and Kashmir are angry because the Omar Abdullah-led state government, they say, just isn’t doing enough.
Chief minister Abdullah and his government claim that they’ve never witnessed anything like these catastrophic floods, which almost completely cut off the state administration from each other and the people.
“I can’t remember a single natural disaster in the country where the government tasked with responding was so completely paralysed,” Abdullah wrote on Sunday. “We had no way to communicate with anyone, and other than a walkie talkie set with the DG Police, we were totally and completely isolated from everyone and everywhere.”
Amid this chaos, the armed forces—already present there in significant numbers since the region is heavily militarized—began a massive relief and rescue operation. (Alongside, brave and enterprising locals reached out on their own, though it was mostly ignored by India’s mainstream press.)
Over 10 days after the floods hit, as they continue to lead the relief effort, these four charts describe the scale of the operations and how it was ramped up as the local administration failed to deliver.
After days of heavy rainfall that left the state administration stretched, 120 army columns were called in for relief and rescue work. By 6 September, they had rescued about 9,000 people. A week later, that number swelled to near 240,000.
At the same time, the Indian Air Force swung into action. Beginning with 30 sorties (flights) that delivered 110 tonnes of relief materials on September 07, the Air Force has now airdropped over 3,500 tonnes into Jammu and Kashmir, with 84 transport aircraft and helicopters (including those from the Army Aviation Corps).
The armed force, along with the local administration, also sent through large amounts of essential commodities into the region. As the scale of the crisis became clear, these deliveries, too, were ramped up.