Health workers in Calcutta now believe they have received sufficient quantities of cholera vaccine to cope with the epidemic which broke out among refugees from East Pakistan.
GV PAN RAF Hercules aircraft at Geneva airport about to be loaded
CU Labels on crates from World Health Organisations (3 shots)
SV Crates being loaded onto Hercules from truck
MV Cartons loaded onto conveyor belt (2 shots)
SV Airport Director (in glasses) watch operation
SV Hatch of Hercules closes
GV Hercules prepare for take-off
SV Airport marshall directs aircraft at Dum Dum Airport
MV & GV Lufthansa 707 prepares to unload (2 shots)
SV & MV Cargo being unloaded (3 shots)
SV & MV Vaccination given to refugees at Salt Lake City camp
Initials SGM/0256 SGM/0315
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Background: Health workers in Calcutta now believe they have received sufficient quantities of cholera vaccine to cope with the epidemic which broke out among refugees from East Pakistan. Medical workers have been working around the clock vaccinating thousands of refugees crowding a temporary encampment called Salt Lake City within calcutta's boundary. This is the closest the authorities have allowed the refugees to the city proper.
Airlifts of vaccine and other supplies from many countries have been arriving steadily at nearby Dum Dum airport. British and American military aircraft have supplemented special flights by commercial aircraft bearing tons of vaccine and associated medical equipment. Teams of volunteers have helped with unloading and unpacking operations. doctors and nurses working among the refugees say the need now is for supplies of antibiotics eye ointments, baby foods, clothing and shelter materials...particularly as light rains which precede the Monsoon are already falling in the area. The Soviet Red Cross is among dozens of organisations now urgently disputing these requirements. Consignments have also arrived from West Germany, Canada, Australia, and Geneva.
As many as five thousand refugees are thought to have died from cholera alone, but while relief organisations and helpers work on in West Bengal there are continuing reports of a fresh wave of refugees fleeing across the border from east Pakistan. The Indian Foreign Minister Swaran Singh has made it clear that India is in no position to keep the refugees. He believes that if the International community considers they cannot return across the border, it should make its own arrangements to take them. Nearly six million refugees have already fled into West Bengal.
SYNOPSIS: A British RAF Hercules aircraft stands on the tarmac at Geneva Airport this week, about to be loaded with medical supplies bound for West Bengal. Teams of volunteer there are coping with a serious cholera epidemic among refugees.
The World Health Organisation headquarters in Geneva has co-ordinated many airlifts to Calcutta. Health officials now believe there is sufficient cholera vaccine in Calcutta to allow the doctors and nurses to contain the epidemic.
There is now a need for supplies of antibiotics, eye ointment, baby food, clothing and shelter materials....particularly as the pre-Monsoon light rains have started in Bengal, and the refugee areas are in danger of being flooded.
This is just one of many military and commercial aircraft helping in the urgent airlift of tons of supplies. Consignments have been arriving here at Calcutta's Dum Dum Airport from all points of the globe.
No accurate figures are yet available but as many as five thousand refugees may have died from Cholera alone. These refugees are receiving vaccinations at Salt Lake City, an encampment just within calcutta's city boundary. It's the closest they've been allowed to the city proper.