While authorities in Uttarakhand are struggling to bring the raging forest fire under control, a group of seven RSS workers used an ingenious method to douse the flames in neighbouring Himachal Pradesh.
When flames leapt from the forests in the hills of Bilaspur, it was not the administration that came to douse it – it was these magnificent seven.
There was no water and no time for waiting for fire brigade. So the RSS workers hit upon a unique idea: they used Date tree leaves to put off the fire.
Green Date leaves do not catch fire easily and the men used it like a squatter to extinguish the flames by beating on them.
Despite their efforts, the workers from the local RSS wing at Bandla were not able to save a larger part of the area.
The action of the RSS workers was in stark contrast to the indifference shown by Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh.
When asked about the forest fires that were affecting his state too, Singh dismissed it as a “nothing new”.
He said that the situation in his state was “not like in Uttarakhand” despite the fact that on May 2 children were evacuated from a school in Kasuali when flames reached a nearby forest.