FRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the India Red Cross Society (IRCS) – Ladakh Initiative

The situation
A massive cloudburst occurred in Leh after torrential rains in the intervening night of 5-6 August 2010. The
worst hit areas are Leh Bus Stand and nearby Choglamsar village. So far, 136 persons have lost their lives
and 200-250 are injured. Five relief camps have been opened in the affected areas.
Reported damages so far are:
• BSNL exchange and Bus Stand in Leh town has completely been washed away.
• The Civil hospital and Leh airport has been inundated.
• The Nyoma-Leh road has been blocked due to heavy mud-slide.
• The Fayang Bridge on the National Highway between Kargil and Leh has been washed away, thus
disrupting traffic.
• The pumping station has been washed away thus, disrupting water supply in Leh township.
• The Cultural Institute of Buddhist Studies has been affected.
• The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camp completely washed away.
Around 6,000 army and paramilitary personnel have been deployed for rescue and relief operations in the
affected areas.

Medium arctic tents
Angle cutter
Inflatable boat
Chain saw
Generator set
Bolt cutter
Hand saw
MFR kit
Breathing system
Oxygen cylinder
Medicine from RML Hospital, Delhi

The disaster management division, MHA, have been provided with five (5) units of INMARSETs to the state
government of Jammu and Kashmir, Leh, for emergency communication purpose.
More than 1,400 people have died across 19 of India’s 28 states during the monsoon rains this year.
Coordination and partnerships
On review of the difficult terrain and the presence of government resources on the ground and considering
its axillary role, the Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS) has been closely working with the government through
the Ministry of Health for responding to the emergency situation in Leh following the cloudburst. A team of
Red Cross staff and volunteers have been working from the onset of the disaster.
A meeting was conveyed in the Emergency Operations Centre by the IRCS secretary general to appraise
actions taken by the national society in response to the cloudburst in Leh to the Movement partners in the
country. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has been extending
its fullest cooperation to the IRCS in planning and mobilisation of relief supplies. IFRC has made available its
disaster management manager to the national society to lead the IRCS team in Leh.
The International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) is in contact with various embassies and consular
services to have a coordinated reunification of family links (RFL) strategy. ICRC will participate in
coordination meetings in New Delhi and facilitate contact in Leh with the IRCS team.
ICRC is preparing an imminent deployment of a small RFL/assessment team (one RFL specialist and two
cooperation FO) to Leh to support the IRCS team there.
Red Cross and Red Crescent action
The IRCS national headquarters, along with the IFRC India country office, is closely monitoring the unfolding
situation in Leh and is in regular contact with the affected state branch. The IFRC India country office is
closely following-up with the IRCS national headquarters on the rising needs from the state branch on
technical support request, in carrying out the emergency assessment in the affected areas.

IRCS is meeting daily to review the situation and to discuss the next steps to take. The daily meetings
include the IFRC head of India office, while several other technical meetings are held daily between IRCS
and IFRC to best coordinate the relief efforts and the best response to the affected areas.
The IRCS chairman and the union health minister, along with the IRCS secretary general, visited Leh on 7
August. Following this visit, IRCS has sent the following relief supplies to Leh:

Kitchen sets
Nomad Units
Body bags
Gum boot
Boiler Suits

Along with these items, a team of three people have departed on 10 August for Leh from Delhi. This team
has been joined by four Red Cross staff and volunteers who have been involved in the operation since the
start of the disaster.
The Ministry of Health and Defense are coordinating arrangements for transportation of goods and personnel.
The needs
Some 1,000 families have been identified as the worst affected. The goods and personnel are being sent to
Leh based on the recommendations submitted by the IRCS Jammu and Kashmir branch. As soon as the
deployed teams arrives at Leh, the teams will operationalize the NOMAD water purification units and will
assess further needs of the affected population which will be the base for further action to be taken by IRCS.
The proposed operation
An experienced team of national disaster response trained (NDRT) volunteers will be deployed by IRCS for
operationalising the NOMAD water purification units and distribution of non-food items. This team will also
continue with the assessment of the area while working of the assigned tasks.
Relief distributions (food, basic non-food and emergency shelter items)
Objective: The immediate needs of at least 1,000 flood-affected families (5,000 beneficiaries) have
been met through relief distributions.
Activities planned:
• Detailed need assessment by IRCS and mobilisation of national disaster water and sanitation
response team (NDWRT) members and volunteers.
• Procurement for replenishment of non-food item (NFI) stocks.
• Dispatch and transportation by IRCS to the distribution sites.
• Storage and distribution of relief items by trained IRCS volunteers and staff.
• Regular detailed monitoring and reporting of distributions.
Emergency health, and water, sanitation and hygiene promotion
Objective: The risks to the flood-affected people from waterborne or water and sanitation related
diseases are reduced through the provision of safe water and adequate sanitation to population of
40,000 persons.
Activities planned:
• Deploy NOMAD water purification units in Leh.
• Assessment of water, sanitation and hygiene situation.
• Mobilization and operationalization of water purification units in the affected areas to supply potable
drinking water to the population of 40,000.
• Provision of safe drinking water to flood-affected families.
• Ongoing monitoring and technical advice by IRCS national headquarters and IFRC.
Action Plan
The initial plan is to deploy human resource, water purification units and non-food items to Leh to intensify
the intervention. However, the deployed personnel will be responsible for the development of further plan of
action based on the assessment which will give direction to the operation.
The items will be distributed by the IRCS state/district branch staff and volunteers, in close consultation and
cooperation with the state and central authorities.
Communications – Advocacy and Public information
The steady flow of timely and accurate information between those working in the field and other major stake-
holders will support the programme objectives of this DREF, increase the profile, funding and other support
for the national society and the International Federation.
It will also provide a platform on which to advocate in the interest of vulnerable people. In close collaboration
with the operation, those affected by this emergency will be provided with information to support their relief
and recovery. Donors and national societies will receive information and materials they can use to promote
this operation, and communications initiatives will help build the information and public relations capacity of

the host national society for future emergencies.

The IFRC’s work is guided by Strategy 2020 which puts
forward three strategic aims:
1. Save lives, protect livelihoods, and strengthen recovery
from disaster and crises.
2. Enable healthy and safe living.
3. Promote social inclusion and a culture of nonviolence
and peace.

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:
In India:
• Indian Red Cross Society: Dr. S P Agarwal, Secretary General;
email:; phone: +91.11.2371.6441;
fax: +91.11.2371.7454
• International Federation country office in India: John Roche, Head of country office;
email:; phone: +91.11.2332.4203; fax: +
International Federation South Asia Office in Delhi:
• Mr. Azmat Ulla, Head of regional office, email:, phone: +91 11 2411 1122,
fax: +91 11 2411 1128.
• Michael Higginson, Regional programme coordinator; phone: +91.11.2411.1125;
fax: +91.11.2411.1128; email:
International Federation Asia Pacific zone office in Kuala Lumpur:
• Jagan Chapagain, deputy head of zone office,
phone: +603 9207 5700, mobile: +6012 215 3765, email:
• Elzat Mamutalieva, operations coordinator, phone: +603 9 207 5724; mobile: +6012 283 7305,
• Alan Bradbury, resource mobilization and PMER coordinator,
email:; phone: +603 9207 5775, fax: +603 2161 0670
Please send all pledges of funding to
• Jeremy Francis, regional logistics coordinator,
phone: +6012 298 9752, fax: +603 2168 8573, email:
• Patrick Fuller, acting zone communications manager, mobile: +6012 387 0829,

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