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The Navy today said 10 of its ships and eight aircraft were involved in the continuing search and rescue operations in the southeast Arabian Sea and Lakshadweep and Minicoy islands following Cyclone Ockhi. The vessels included capital ships such as "Chennai" and "Kolkata" which were carrying relief materials, a Defence statement said tonight. In addition, eight aircraft, including long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft P8I, were deployed throughout the day. "A total of 55 people were rescued today taking the total to 145.
The weather conditions are still adverse at the L&M Islands," the release read. Naval ships 'Chennai', 'Trikand' and 'Kolkata' were stationed around the Lakshadweep islands with relief materials. The ships were equipped with desalination plants and will be able to provide the islands fresh water as and when required. The total relief material carried would sustain approximately 5,000 people for over seven days. Additionally, all naval units in the vicinity of the Lakshadweep and Minicoy islands had been directed to provide fresh water in consultation with the local administration. Additional units will also be deployed to augment water supply, the release said. The other ships were continuing the search and rescue operations along the Kerala coast and around the L&M Islands in a systematic and planned manner to provide immediate aid to any person, vessel/boat in distress. "The Indian Navy is relentless in shouldering the responsibility of providing relief from this natural disaster impacting the southeast Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep islands," it said.
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