Victims’ misery in remote areas continues as relief eludes them

- PRAKASH ADHIKARI, Nuwakot

May 13, 2015-

While the nation has been rocked by yet another major trembler 16 days after the 7.9 magnitude Great quake that left a trail of death and devastation in its wake, victims in remote areas of Nuwakot district are yet to receive relief materials provided by the government agencies, security personnel or non-governmental organisations.

While the ongoing relief collection campaign in the district has slowed down as most earthquake victims at the district headquarters have already managed to acquire adequate amount of relief materials (in some cases, more than they actually require) the condition of the victims in far-flung areas in the district  has not improved as they are still desperately waiting for food and other essential relief materials.

However, Chief District Officer (CDO) Kosh Hari Niraula, claimed that relief materials have reached all the VDCs in the district, although not in adequate quantity.

“Only 5,000 tents have reached the district where around 45 thousand houses have been razed to the ground,” he said. However, according to Mohan Rai of Suryamati, the tent he got (including the ones provided to his neighbours whose houses were also destroyed by the quake) is so small he cannot even shelter his family of seven.

“I am in a dilemma whether to use it to safeguard our food supplies or build a shelter for the children,” Rai said.

Furthermore, due to the constant aftershocks, the meeting of District Disaster Management Committee (DDMC) held every day to coordinate relief and rescue efforts has not been convened in the absence of a proper agenda.

Various organisations that had received permits from the DDMC to conduct relief campaigns are slowly going out of contact. CDO Niraula said that in a latest such instant an Australian organisation had gone out of contact after receiving permits for relief distribution.

On top of that, even the cash provided as relief by the government has only been distributed in four wards in the VDC comprising 11 wards. In the meantime, relief materials bound for Panchakanya-7 have been looted halfway. “The most essential thing for us at the moment are tents, but we have been deprived of them,” said earthquake victim Kedar Thapa of Panchakanya-7. Meanwhile, organising a press conference,  district chapters of major political parties have declared that they will mobilise their activists for relief and rescue operations.

Published: 14-05-2015 09:51

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