Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday directed Pakistan Navy to move its personnel to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and help evacuate people from flood-ravaged areas.
He issued the instruction as he visited flood-hit districts of the province to gain firsthand knowledge of damages caused by heavy rains and floods in the province.
The premier spent a busy day in the province and took an aerial view of devastation caused by flash floods and to express solidarity with the people.
Gilani took an aerial view of different areas of Khyber-Pakhtoonkhwa besides holding a meeting with ANP chief Asfandyar Wali Khan. He was briefed about areas worst hit by floods in the province.
Gilani issued instructions to relevant organisations to urgently mount rescue, relief and rehabilitation efforts for the people trapped and dislocated because of flood waters.
The federal government, he said, would extend all possible support and assistance for the safety of the people. He appreciated the efforts being made by the various organisations, particularly military helicopters engaged in the relief operations.
He directed the NDMA chairman to actively pursue the relief operation and divert maximum resources for the rehabilitation of flood-stricken people.
He also asked the relevant organisations to take measures in advance to avoid spread of any possible epidemic. The people of the affected areas, he added, also need to be apprised of the safety and precautionary measures for their protection.
It is learnt that more than 25,000 tents have been provided to the affectees of Nowshera, Dera Ismail Khan and other areas of the K-P.
Through aerial view, it was evident that the floods have caused havoc in the low-lying areas and damaged huge infrastructure besides claiming human lives.
Gilani was accompanied by Interior Minister Rehman Malik, State Minister for Information Samsam Ali Bukhari, and Chairman National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Lt-Gen (retired) Nadeem Ahmad.
Upon his arrival at Peshawar, the prime minister was received by Chief Minister Amir Haider Khan Hoti, Awami National Party (ANP) chief Asfandyar Wali Khan and K-P Minister for Information Mian Iftikhar Hussain.
He also received an update on the situation developing after heavy rains in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2010.