SWAT: The Army’s rescue operation in Swat has ended, said Colonel Tufail while speaking to reporters on Friday night at the headquarters of the 19 Division in Upper Swat.
“Operation Labaik, initiated soon after the recent floods hit the area, has ended now,” he said. Citing achievements, Col Tufail said, “6,620 tons of food was distributed among 88,627 flood-affected families while 31,000 stranded people, including 10,000 tourists, were also rescued.”
The Army carried out rescue operations in Swat, Shangla, Kohistan and Mansehra districts.
About the damages caused by the flood, he said, “190 schools, 19 hospitals, 455 micro power stations, 131 mosques, 51 bridges, 1,279 shops, 115 hotels, 111 watermills and 93 kilometres of roads were completely washed away by the flood. Moreover, 3,392 houses were destroyed and 3,037 houses were partially damaged in Swat and Shangla districts only.”
Regarding the role of the Pakistan Army in rescue and rehabilitation, he said, “The Army is taking an active part in the process of reconstruction and rehabilitation. Twenty-eight out of 34 kilometres of road from Bahrain to Kalam has been restored and the rest will be restored soon. The Army will also construct 3,392 houses with a room, a kitchen and a bathroom for the flood-affected people.”
“Those who joined militancy under compulsion in the Swat Valley will be rehabilitated by the Army. A rehabilitation centre by the name of Mashal has been set up where 40 persons are currently admitted and 110 more will be admitted. Eighty-four people have been sent home after being given vocational training.”
Published in The Express Tribune, October 10th, 2010.