QUETTA: Authorities in Balochistan have designated eight flood-hit districts, including Naseerabad, Kachhi, Sibi, Jhal Magsi, Jafarabad, Kohlu and Barkhan, as calamity-hit areas and promised to unveil a compensation package for flood victims soon.
The declaration was made by Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Mohammad Aslam Raisani on Saturday following an inspection tour.
Earlier Raisani, provincial ministers Mir Asim Kurd, Babo Amin Umrani and chief secretary Ahmed Baksh Lehri paid an aerial visit to the flood-stricken regions of the province and inspected the destruction caused by the floods.
Talking to the media in Dera Murad Jamali, Raisani said that the Provincial Disaster Management Authority and the revenue department have been directed to conduct a survey in the affected areas and to submit a report within a week so that the government can take up the issue in the cabinet meeting and initiate the rehabilitation process. He pledged that the government would soon announce compensation for the flood victims.
Commenting on the absence of international donor agencies at a time of need, the chief minister said, “I condemn the decision of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) disallowing international aid agencies to take part in relief operations.” He added that the provincial government will take up the issue with the authorities concerned. It is the moral obligation of international donor agencies to come forward and help on humanitarian grounds, he said.
Raisani admitted that it was beyond the capacity of any individual or the government to stop the natural disaster but responsibility lies with the government to provide relief and rehabilitate the affected people.
“The government will not leave those affected alone at this difficult time and will try its level best to help them,” he added. The chief minister also distributed tents and other relief goods among the affected people in Dera Murad Jamali.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 1st, 2010.