24th December 2018 09:07:54 Hours
Army troops in Mullaittivu with the assistance of Sailors were able to rescue more than 1000 stranded and flood-affected civilians in the past 48 hours ending around 10.00 a.m. Sunday morning (23) after torrential rains and storms, beginning late Friday (21) evening swept across the general areas of Oddusudan, Mannakandal, Karuwala Kandal, Kodadi Kallu, Kanagarathnapuram and Vidyapuram areas of the 64 Division and 68 Division of the Security Force Headquarters- Mullaittivu.
As rains began causing havoc with water levels swelling fast amid stormy winds, roads turned inundated with floods bringing transport to a standstill and submerging a number of houses in those areas to floods. Some of those helpless civilians were seen atop trees and other elevated places and structures when the troops reached them. In addition to civilians, affected animals, like dogs, cows and bulls, cats, etc were also directed by troops to safer areas and they too were provided with some food items.
Troops of the 64 Division on the directions of Major General Dushyantha Rajaguru, Commander, Security Forces - Mullaittivu and under the close supervision of Brigadier Jayanath Jayaweera, General Officer Commanding, 64 Division began their rescue missions around 2.00 a.m on early Saturday (22) morning amid heavy downpour with the support of the life-saving team of the nearby Special Forces (SF) and sailors of the Navy in the Nayaru detachment in close proximity.
Troops evacuated a few more than 100 helpless men, women and children, stranded inside their own houses under floods and immediately carried them to safer locations with the support of boats. Some of the feeble and children had to be carried on shoulders as flood levels were fast swelling.
As of Sunday (23) morning, 682 people of 276 families have been re-located in safer locations and troops continue to provide them with cooked meals and immediate medical aids. Similarly, troops were compelled to clear one of the major supply routes, Nedunkerni–Mullaweli road which remained blocked due to fallen trees. Around 300 breakfast packets were also distributed among stranded people in the same morning (22) as those helpless people could not move out from homes due to surrounding water levels.
7 Gemunu Watch and 4 Sri Lanka National Guard troops of the 683 Brigade of the 68 Division under command to the SFHQ - Mullaittivu rescued 22 trapped civilians from different locations in the past 48 hours. Those relief operations in the aftermath of the rains are still continuing under the close supervision of Major General Rasika Fernando, General Officer Commanding-68 Division and respective Brigade Commanders.