Joby Mussa waived to the Indian Air Force helicopter hovering over his house. The commandos promptly winched him safely inside the chopper. This could have been yet another successful rescue story in Kerala, except that Mussa never wanted to be rescued in first place.
The 28-year-old is being widely ridiculed on the on the social media after a news story revealed that the man just boarded the chopper to get ‘a feel of the copter’.
However, the Chengannur resident claims that he accidently boarded the rescue chopper. Mussa claims that the air force commandos were talking in Hindi and he couldn’t comprehend what they were saying. The 28-year-old said that he thought ‘they were asking him to come for a ride’ and hopped inside the chopper.
In an interview to Mathrubhumi News, Mussa reiterated that the ‘joyride’ was not deliberate and that it was a case of miscommunication. Calling all reports as ‘fake news’, Mussa said that the ‘misreporting’ has hurt his family. On his Facebook account, Mussa’s friend shared the Mathrubhumi interview saying ‘friends, please share the truth.’
Earlier in the day, a Times of India report had said that Mussa had taken the chopper for joyride. Quoting an officer, the report said that the fake rescue ride cost the Indian Air Force over Rs 1 lakh.
Meanwhile, with the rescue operations in the affected areas nearing a close, the government turned its attention to rehabilitating people, days after the monsoon fury ravaged the state claiming 231 lives and forcing more than 14.50 lakh out of their homes.
Chief Minister Vijayan said 13.43 lakh people were still in 3,314 relief camps. The Navy called off its 14-day-long rescue operations, saying there were no more requests for evacuation.
The state has estimated its loss in the deluge at Rs 20,000 crore and wants an interim assistance of Rs 2,600 crore from the Centre.
The Centre yesterday released Rs 600 crore, including the Rs 500 crore announced by the prime minister.