After relentless rescue efforts spanning 16 days, all 41 trapped workers were successfully evacuated from the Silkyara tunnel in Uttarakhand. Simultaneously, locals celebrated by distributing sweets outside the tunnel while the workers were being rescued.
NDRF has proved its efficacy with its commendable performance during various disasters including the drowning cases, building collapses, landslides, devastating floods and Cyclones. NDRF has saved 133,192 human lives and retrieved 2760 dead bodies of disaster victims in 73 response operations in the country.
During the Kosi breach in Bihar in August 2008, which was declared a national calamity by Prime Minister Shri Manmohan Singh, NDRF personnel actively engaged themselves in rescue operations and relief duties in districts Supaul, Madhepura, Araria and Purnia.
About 780 NDRF personnel trained in flood rescue operations along with 153 high capacity inflatable boats and other rescue equipment were deployed in the flood affected areas. The swift and highly skilled operations of NDRF saved more than 100,000 people trapped in swirling waters of river Kosi.
NDRF personnel distributed relief supplies including drinking water to the stranded flood victims. Medical camps were also established to provide medical care to the flood affected people. Impressed with prompt and efficient response of NDRF, Chief Minister of Bihar Shri Nitish Kumar approached Prime Minister Shri Manmohan Singh for a NDRF Bn to be stationed in Bihar and offered 65 acres (26 ha) of land at Bihta near Patna.
NDRF commendable rescue operations were no less appreciated during the 2008 floods in Odisha, Maharashtra, Kerala and Assam. On 25 May 2009 Cyclone Aila hit West Bengal coast with a fury unprecedented in recent history. It took at least 94 lives, seven of them in Kolkata, and affected over 4 million people.
More than six lakh houses were destroyed completely or damaged partially. NDRF promptly responded to the devastating situation and 600 personnel of NDRF with 84 boats and other rescue equipment started rescue and relief operations at cyclone affected areas of district 24 Pargana North and South of West Bengal. During the operations NDRF personnel rescued around 2000 trapped persons and distributed 50 truckloads of relief materials to the affected people.
On 1 October 2009 in the wake of worsening flood situations in the States of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, the State Government of both the states sent their requests for deployment of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) for rescue and relief operations. NDMA mobilised 963 flood rescue trained personnel (including some deep divers) and 308 inflatable motorised boats from 05 NDRF Bns located at Arakkonam (Chennai), Pune, Mundali (Odisha), Greater Noida and Bhatinda and airlifted on 2–3 Oct 2009 in Air Force IL-76 and AN-32 aircraft from nearest Air Force bases and Civil Airports.
The rescue personnel deployed in 04 districts of Andhra Pradesh (Kurnool, Vijayawada, Mehboob Nagar and Nandyal) and 04 districts of Karnataka (Bagalkote, Raichur, Gadag and Vijaypur) and immediately started rescue and relief operations in the flood affected districts of both the states.
NDRF rescued tens of thousands of persons marooned in the floods at these two States and distributed over 40 quintals of food and drinking water. The medical teams of NDRF at these districts administering medical first response and distributing medicines to the flood victims.
On 26 January 2010 a five-storied under-construction residential building collapsed at Bellary, Karnataka with about 50 people trapped under the huge debris. 3 rescue teams (102 personnel) of NDRF Bn Pune promptly airlifted to Bellary and NDRF personnel carried out round the clock operation with the help of search & rescue equipment and dogs for 09 days. In the meticulously carried out operation under huge debris the NDRF managed to rescue 20 live persons. The last person was rescued on the 9th day. NDRF also retrieved 27 dead bodies trapped under debris.
2020: In May 2020, a gas leak occurred in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, prompting a response from the NDRF. Additionally, Cyclone Amphan struck West Bengal, necessitating emergency measures and disaster management.
2021: During February 2021, Uttarakhand faced a glacial outburst flood, demanding immediate attention and relief efforts from the NDRF. Cyclone Yaas affected both Odisha and West Bengal, leading to a significant deployment of resources for rescue and recovery operations.
2023: In Assam, NDRF teams were deployed to address the annual flood situation, conducting rescue operations and providing essential relief materials to stranded individuals. The force played a crucial role in minimizing casualties during a cyclone in Odisha by executing preemptive evacuations, search and rescue operations, and distribution of relief materials.
In response to an earthquake in Himachal Pradesh, the NDRF promptly initiated search and rescue operations, aiding in locating and saving trapped individuals. Moreover, in Bharuch district, specifically in Nikora Village, the NDRF rescued 105 people stranded in low-lying areas, working alongside civil administration to ensure their relocation to safety, despite facing challenges posed by the dangerously high water levels.