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  1. Read news claiming Uttarakhand helicopter rides to be chargeable during rescue operations? It was FAKE!

Read news claiming Uttarakhand helicopter rides to be chargeable during rescue operations? It was FAKE!

Media reports on Sunday claimed passengers would be charged for availing helicopters during rescue operations at the time of disasters in Uttarakhad.

By: | New Delhi | Updated: July 16, 2018 4:36 PM
uttarakhand helicopter rescue cost Uttarakhand government said it is being circulated by some people on the social media that the Uttarakhand government is charging for helicopter services from the disaster affected people in Pithoragarh. (Representational/PTI file)

Reports on Sunday claimed passengers would be charged for availing helicopters during rescue operations at the time of disasters in Uttarakhad. The news, however, turned out to be fake as the government clarified that there had been no such decision to charge people during rescue operations. The news reports claiming the Uttarakhand Civil Aviation Development Authority had ordered that charges for normal passengers availing helicopters in Pithoragarh during rescue operations at the time of disaster, will be fixed Rs. 3,100 (including GST) per person, had triggered outrage.

The government, however, said in a statement: “It is being circulated by some people on the social media that the Uttarakhand government is charging for helicopter services from the disaster affected people in Pithoragarh. This is to clarify in this regard that the said news is completely misleading.”

Uttarakhand CM Trivendra S Rawat tweeted: “This is yet another baseless twisting of facts by @ani to to manufacture news- the attached govt order dated 4th July provided for stationing of choppers & had clear directive to use the choppers for rescue at NO COST to evacuees.”

The official statement further said:

“In view of the possibility of heavy rains and on the instructions of the Chief Minister Mr Trivendra Singh Rawat to safeguard the people trapped in the disaster, arrangements have been made for one helicopter each in Garhwal and Kumaon. Given the high sensitivity of Pithoragarh, it was decided to station the helicopter there.

“Also, clear instructions have been given to Heli Transport Company that no rent will be taken from people trapped in the disaster and local citizens. When the helicopter is not needed for disaster relief, only at that time it can be used for taking travelers (who are not disaster affected) from Dharchula to Gunji and for this the fare of Rs. 2500 & GST can be charged from the passengers.

“This fare has been fixed only for non-rescue flights. But helicopter will not be used for ordinary passengers, if needed for disaster rescue operations. No rent will be taken for safely rescuing local people trapped in the disaster.”

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