Over 225,000 people are feared dead and over 5 million were made homeless by one of the world’s worst Tsunamis in recorded history that struck in S.E. Asia on 26 December 2004. Upon first news of the disaster, HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the head of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, offered prayers and made an international appeal to all communities and countries for help. Within hours of the disaster, which has claimed over 12,000 lives in South India, BAPS started relief operations in the most affected areas. With its experience and expertise in more than 30 relief operations around the world, especially the long-term rehabilitation programme successfully accomplished in Gujarat and Orissa, BAPS mobilised National and International efforts through its centres in India, UK and USA.
Synoposis of BAPS Tsunami Relief Work 2004-5
* BAPS Relief Work performed in Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
* 150 BAPS sadhus & volunteers deployed in the worst affected areas.
* 51 villages and 26 relief camps provided with aid.
* 174,000 hot meals served to the homeless.
* 12,000 Food Packets and 30,000 water pouches distributed.
* 26 tonnes of rice, 16 tonnes of dal & 4 tonnes of sooji distributed.
* 3 hand pumps and 4 water tanks installed to provide fresh drinking water.
* 6,006 homeless families provided with essential household goods.
* 12,000 notebooks and other educational materials provided to children & students.
* 4 medical camps organised in which 1708 adults and children were treated.
* Medical assistance to medical camps:
o 200,000 tablets to treat malaria, cholera, depression, diarrhoea, fever antibiotics,
o 8,000 injections, 15,000 packets of rehydration powder.
* 11,000 mouth masks and 700 pairs of hand gloves to help clean up the area.
* $ 7 million worth of medicines airlifted to Sri Lanka from USA in collaboration with CitiHope International.