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Now, Shimla is just 20 minutes away from Chandigarh

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The heli-taxi service that will cut down the travel time by four hours. (Photo- AIR)

Shimla, June 4: The travel distance between this Himachal Pradesh tourist resort and Chandigarh was reduced to just 20 minutes with the launch of a heli-taxi service on Monday.

The state government in association with helicopter service operator Pawan Hans Ltd launched a to and fro heli-taxi service on the Chandigarh-Shimla route, cutting down the earlier four hours travel time.

Each sortie, with 19 passengers on board, will offer a minimum fare of Rs 2,999 per person. It will initially ply twice a week, Monday and Friday.

The helicopter will take off from Shimla’s airport at Jubbarhatti at 8 a.m. and reach the Chandigarh International Airport at 8.20 a.m.

helitaxi-shimla-chandigarh

And from Chandigarh to Shimla, the flight will take off at 9 a.m. and reach Shimla at 9.20 a.m., an official with Pawan Hans told IANS.

He said the frequency of heli-taxi service would be increased depending on response of the passengers.

Otherwise, it takes minimum four hours to travel between Shimla and Chandigarh by road.

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur flagged off the first service from Shimla. He said this would greatly help to boost the tourism industry in the state.

The government is also planning to start heli-taxi service between Chandigarh and Manali and sortie service from Manali to the majestic Rohtang Pass, an official said.

Members of the tourism industry are elated as they are hopeful that high-end tourists, especially foreigners and business travellers, will prefer to visit the state capital and its nearby destinations by flights.

“We are hopeful that the heli-taxi service will give boost to the tourism industry,” D.P. Bhatia, liaison officer with Shimla-based Oberoi Group of hotels, told IANS.

IANS

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Karnataka CM briefs President on Rescue operations in Kodagu, Modi assures help

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Kodagu (Karnataka), Aug 19 :Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Sunday briefed President Ram Nath Kovind on the rescue operations in flood-hit Kodagu district where more than 3,500 people have been rescued and e six people were killed even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday gave assurance of providing help to tackle the flood situation in various parts of the state.

 

“The Chief Minister spoke to the President and informed him that the Indian Army, Navy and other state and central agencies have rescued more than 3,500 people so far,” an official statement said as hundreds are marooned in villages and towns due to heavy rains.

The Chief Minister, for a second consecutive day, held an aerial survey and visited the towns and villages of the coffee-growing district, which has been the worst-hit in the state due to south-west monsoon rains.

Operations are on to rescue those stranded at various places, it added.

As many as 317 people were rescued and shifted to safer places in the district on Saturday and rescue operations were on around Makkandor and other areas of the district on Sunday, said officials, adding that the rescued included a two-month-old infant.

Modi, in a tweet, said he spoke to Kumaraswamy regarding the flood situation in parts of the state. “Extended all possible support in the rescue and relief operations. I pray for the safety and well-being of those in the flood affected areas,” he tweeted.

 

 

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Al Ansari Exchange Donates half a million dirhams to Kerala Flood Victims

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Mohamed Ali Al Ansari

Al Ansari Exchange, the UAE-based foreign exchange and worldwide money transfer company, has announced a donation of half a million dirhams to aid in the relief efforts in the South Indian state of Kerala that has been ravaged by unprecedented floods.

Incessant rains and floods in Kerala have led to the death of hundreds of Indian citizens and have left thousands of people homeless. To offer further support to the victims of this calamity, the company has launched a service through which, donations can be made to the Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF) with no service charges, through its branches across the UAE.

Mohamed Ali Al Ansari, Chairman and Managing Director, Al Ansari Exchange, said: “We are keen to support Kerala flood victims in view of the massive devastation and damage caused by unprecedented floods that has struck the region. Considered to be the region’s worst flood in last 100 years, the crisis has caused several deaths and displacement of thousands of people in Kerala.

Through this contribution and by waiving off the service charges on all donations made to the Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund through our branches, we aim to make a positive impact in mitigating the crisis Kerala is going through and offer support to the victims of this calamity.”

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Rescued Kerala flood victim lauds NCC cadets

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Kerala Flood

Kottayam, Aug 19 : A rescued Kerala flood victim on Sunday lauded the efforts of the NCC Kottayam unit tweeting: “All the temples, mosques and churches here are drowned in water, but God came wearing uniforms to save us”.

The Kottayam unit of the National Cadet Corps (NCC) and the Lakshadweep Directorate have been actively involved in the rescue and relief efforts for the past few days after rains and floods battered Kerala.

By now, the NCC Kottayam unit has rescued more than 100 people besides providing relief to around 3,000 people in the flood-hit regions of Pathanamthitta, Thiruvalla, Muvattupuzha, Idukki and Kottayam, in conjunction with the concerned civil authorities.

Led by Brigadier N.V. Sunil Kumar, the rescue group comprises around 60 military personnel including officers, 40 civilian staff and 600 cadets, both boys and girls.

“They are enduring the adverse weather and putting their own lives at risk without any equipment, improvising from available local resources and materials to save lives. This tweet has given all of us a huge morale booster,” Sunil Kumar said.

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