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Man stuck in raging river pulled out alive after 16 hours

 Man stuck in raging river pulled out alive after 16 hours


Sumesh Rajan

Mumbai: 17 August 2020


A man who had waded into a raging river for a swim and got swept away for around 100 meters before being stranded on a rock amidst rapid flowing waters, was rescued safe and sound after almost 16 hours.


This incident took place close to Ratanpur town in Chhatisgarh state of India.


The man identified as 42-year-old Jitendra Kumar Kashyap, a resident of Gidhauri village located around 11 kms from Khutaghat Dam, had come for a swim in the river on August 16 afternoon. Due to heavy rains in the last few days, the dam was filled up, and the Kharang river, across which the dam is built, was in torrent.


“At around 4 pm, Jitendra jumped in to the fast-flowing river from the walkway over the West Weir of the dam. He got sucked into the rapid flowing waters and was swept for over 100 meters before getting stranded on a rocky outcrop with a single tree,” said Harish Chandel, who runs a restaurant nearby and an eye witness to the incident.


The police and disaster management authorities were informed about the incident soon after, and rescue efforts commenced at around 6 pm after arranging for manpower and equipment. However, due to the raging waters and descent of darkness, nothing much could be done to rescue Jitendra, who was clinging to dear life on the rock hugging tight to the tree on it.


“Though we had brought in heavy ropes and rescue tubes along with divers to rescue the man stranded amidst the raging river, the force of the river made it next to impossible to carry out the rescue operation. Despite several attempts, the heavy flow of the water and weather conditions posed a problem for rescue during the night,” said Lalita Mehar, the probationary Deputy Superintendent of Police of Ratanpur, Bilaspur.


“Fortunately, despite the river flowing rapidly, the rock on which the man was ensconced was safe. After discussing with our senior officials, we finally requested the Indian Air Force (IAF) for a chopper to rescue the man. In the morning, the air force chopper was pressed into the rescue operation, and the man was safely lifted from the rocky outcrop at around 8 am today,” said DSP Mehar.


A shaken Jitendra was then rushed to Ramkrishna CARE Hospitals, Raipur, for a check-up and was later discharged.


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