Bengaluru: Indian Air Force and the Assam Rifles were pressed in to douse widespread fire in forests that affected an area of 20 sq km in the Lunglei district of Mizoram. 

The fire, which broke out on April 24 in Gen A College Veng area, spread towards Serkawn and Zotlang areas of Lunglei. 

The Assam Rifles deployed two parties under Assistant Commandant Narayan Sangroula along with the entire fire fighting equipment and a medical team under Captain VK Dabas were deployed to provide assistance to locals and help them in the firefight. 

On April 25 morning, it further extended to Lunglei main town towards the residential area of Zotlang. The firefighters of the force and the locals controlled the fire but it extended towards the Chanmari area and the Valley below. 

The state administration sought the Indian Air Force's assistance in dousing the fire in the valley area. 

It deployed two of its Mi-17V5 helicopters equipped with large-size buckets to douse the major fire in the Lunglei district and adjoining areas.

On April 26, "Mi17 helicopter of the Indian Air Force commences fire fighting ops with Bambi Buckets at Lunglei in Mizoram. In the morning a recce was carried out at affected areas," Shillong-based Defence PRO Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh said.

As of now, "the fire is under control near the residential Areas. However, still increasing in the valley below Chanmari," an Assam Rifles official said.

As per the data, over 450 cases of infernos have been reported since 2019, which claimed seven lives and injuring 11 in Mizoram.