Photo: Express News
Lahore: Hundreds of flood-affected families in South Punjab are still waiting for government assistance, there are many families whose houses, livestock and crops were all destroyed in the flood, but they have not yet received assistance to build houses.
Officials of the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA Punjab) say that around 4,000 relief checks were pending for the victims, which have been issued.
Last year, the floods caused havoc in three districts of South Punjab, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rajanpur and Mianwali, where thousands of people were affected by this natural disaster. Shah Nawaz, a resident of Mirampur North in Rajanpur area, is also among the flood victims, not only his houses were destroyed by the flood, but livestock and crops were also damaged.
Shahnawaz said that dozens of families, including his, have been affected by the flood, but the government has not yet provided them with relief money.
There are many people like Shahnawaz who have not been able to get the relief money from the government. According to the Punjab government, a total of 55,452 houses have been destroyed by the flood, of which 47,500 were undeveloped and 7,863 were solid houses and houses. Crops standing on 4 lakh 30 thousand acres were damaged due to flood. During this natural calamity, 81 people were killed, 55 were injured and two disabled while 652 animals were killed.
According to the spokesman of PDMA, the Punjab government has distributed an aid amount of Rs. 40 thousand rupees financial assistance was announced. Similarly, financial assistance of Rs.4 lakh was promised for the loss of solid houses, Rs.2 lakh for the damaged house, Rs.75,000 for the death of a large animal and Rs.5,000 for the death of a small animal. is being provided.
According to the Punjab government, apart from the relief money, the affected families have also been provided with ration, tents, clothes, medicines and other necessities of life including fodder for cattle.
Sources said that Rs 41 crore has been spent on the survey conducted by the Punjab government to estimate the damages in the three flood-affected districts. On the other hand, flood victims say that the amount of aid given by the government is insufficient.
Talking to The Express Tribune, Shah Nawaz said that the aid money being given by the government is like a straw in a camel’s mouth, construction material and transport costs have increased manifold. He said that still there is hope that some relief will be given from the aid money received by the government.
Saleem Iqbal, a social worker and participant in flood-affected areas, says that there is no doubt that the amount of aid given by the government is very low. It is impossible to build a house for two lakh rupees, a washroom cannot be built with that much money. He said that victims are being made houses by many NGOs and institutions. If the government and NGOs work together, the amount of aid to the victims could be increased.
According to the spokesman of PDMA Punjab, the government has the relief money and there is no problem of lack of funds, so far more than 51 thousand victims have been given relief amount of 12 billion rupees while the rest more than 4 thousand. Relief checks were also ready for the victims which could not be issued due to the transfer of administrative officers, however, those checks have also been issued this week and all the victims will receive their relief funds in the next few days.