India’s Aid to Maldives Through IRCTC’s Water Stock

By Tiki Rajwi

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Since Friday, India has airlifted nearly 400 tonnes of bottled water to Maldives which has been reeling under an acute water crisis.

The Indian Air Force (IAF) and the Navy have rendered yeoman service in tackling the emergency, but there is another agency that enabled India’s ‘water diplomacy’ to be undertaken at short notice – the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd (IRCTC). The thousands of bottles of potable water airlifted to Maldives since Friday have come from the vast packaged drinking water stock  maintained by the IRCTC.

On Saturday alone, the IRCTC, which is a subsidiary of the Indian Railways, supplied 150 tonnes of water which was promptly airlifted by the IAF transporters to the island nation.

“The 150 tonnes came from our stock at the Rail Neer plant in Palur (Tamil Nadu). We sent the water to the Navy’s Arakkonam air station as instructed by our corporate office,” Ravi Kumar, assistant general manager of the Rail Neer plant, said.

“For us, this was not a big order since we always maintain stocks for railway use,” he said. Maldives had flashed an SOS after a fire damaged its water treatment plant on Thursday. The archipelago is heavily dependent on treated sea water and the mishap cut off supply to citizens. More info

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