Observing that delay in rehabilitation work could prove fatal, President Peoples Democratic Party Mehbooba Mufti Tuesday called for immediate disbursement of relief in order to allow flood affected people to reconstruct and repair their houses before the onset of winters.
After visiting several flood affected areas of Anantnag and Bijbehara, Mehbooba said that government does not seems to have realize the magnitude of the damages caused due to the recent natural calamity as such relief and rehabilitation work was being carried out casually.
Quoting media reports that more than 2 lakh structures, including 20000 houses have suffered partial to total damage due to the floods across the state excluding Srinagar City, the PDP president said that the state cannot be insensitive towards the urgent need to provide roof to the people rendered homeless. “There is an urgent need for disbursement of relief for the reconstruction of houses so that the people could have at least something to live in before the onset of winter”.
Ironically, she said, the state government has provided tented accommodation only to limited affected families, while others have been left at the mercy of God. “Government should have more than a fortnight after the floods provided at least tented accommodation with basic facilities of electricity, drinking water and sanitation. However, the situation was still grim on the ground as hardly any effective measure was visible”, she said.
She said that in case the people were not provided with the immediate relief to reconstruct and repair their house they will have to spent harsh winter under the open sky. This, she said, will only compound the issue and risk the lives of people across the state.
Mehbooba said that entire Anantnag district was badly affected due to the floods but the relief was yet to reach the affected families. The houses, crops, agriculture fields, orchards and public infrastructure have suffered massive damage in most parts of the district and situation was really bad on ground.
The PDP president further said that the sanitation was another important issue, government was not paying heed to. “It is unfortunate that hardly any major effort was visible on the sanitation front leaving people prone to the spread of diseases”, she said.
She further expressed concern over the non-availability of ration in the affected and unaffected areas of the state. “Even the paid ration, as per the people, was not available at the state run depots, which speaks volumes about the lack of coordination among various government agencies”, she said.
The PDP president said that contradiction by the government in the announcement of ration has also compounded the matter as people were complaining of not even getting the paid ration from the state run depots. The government, she said, first announced that free ration would be given to general public of the state but later it was claimed that the concession was for only the flood affected people. “Now as per the people there was no ration available even in the areas which were not affected due to floods”, she said.