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Srinagar’s Floating Ambulance Set To Help Thousands Of COVID Patients

Srinagar: Tariq Ahmad Patloo, a houseboat owner has started the unique service of a boat ambulance service, equipped with healthcare facilities on Dal Lake in the Jammu and Kashmir Valley. The service, which is expected to benefit thousands of people in the landlocked region, The New Indian Express (TNIE) reported quoting ANI.

“Considering the situation at hospitals and homes due to rising cases, I have set up this facility for people. I got a number of phone calls for assistance and I provided them proper help as per their requirement. Presently the ambulance is full with main equipment including first aid, stretcher, wheelchair, BP set, and PPE kits,” Patloo told ANI.

There was a spurt in COVID cases in the valley due to the huge inflow of tourists during the spring season.

Patloo told ANI that people have apprehensions in coming forward to rush patients to hospitals. He said no one was ready to escort him from his houseboat when he was infected. His floating ambulance might make a difference now.

“This ambulance has siren and speaker facilities which are being used for announcements aimed to make people aware regarding wearing masks and other important things. I tried my best to make this ambulance friendly for people and within two to three days oxygen facility will also be available,” Patloo told ANI.

Residents believe that more such ambulances are required to cover the need for medical services in the area.

“The step taken by Tariq is very good, it should have happened 10-15 years ago. I believe there should be more such ambulance services at other lakes also. There is Nigeen Lake and other lakes too where such service is required,” Muhammed Yaseen told ANI.

The Dal Lake ambulance could prove to be a game-changer if equipped with medical practitioners. “It is my request to the government to kindly provide me a doctor facility so that I will treat patients properly during any emergency,” Patloo urged.

He said he heard so many stories where people living around the lake have suffered due to lack of medical facilities.

“The ambulance service is a must, not only at Dal Lake but at other lakes as well. We need a minimum of 10 such more ambulances as Kashmir has been affected by the second wave of coronavirus in the country,” Manzoor Ahmad, a Shikara owner told ANI.

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