As Kashmir Valley reports a surge in Covid-19 cases, a houseboat owner has started a floating ambulance service that comes equipped with healthcare facilities on Dal Lake.

The floating ambulance service on Dal Lake

Brainchild of boat owner Tariq Ahmad Patloo, the floating ambulance comes equipped with PPE kits, stretchers, wheelchair and other amenities. “Considering the situation at hospitals and homes due to rising cases, I have set up this facilities for people,” Patloo said while talking to ANI. Patloo also told the news agency that he came up with the idea of the ambulance last year when he tested positive for the virus.

Floating ambulance service make huge impact in valley

Considering the people’s apprehension in helping Covid-19 positive patients reach hospitals, he believes that his ambulance service will make a huge impact. This ambulance has sirens and speakers facility which are being used for announcements aimed to make people aware regarding wearing masks and other important things. Meanwhile, the Union Territory recorded its biggest single-day hike on Friday as it reported 5,433 Covid-19 cases, pushing its tally to 2,06,954, officials said.

A small drop in the ocean

Patloo said people have apprehension in coming forward to rush the virus patients to hospitals. He said nobody was ready to escort him from his houseboat when he was infected. But with the arrival of floating ambulance, even if a small drop in the ocean, the situation is expected to improve.


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 services are required,” one resident said.

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