Flooding destroys nearly 2,000 schools in Punjab

Published September 17, 2014
A rescue worker carries an elderly woman from an area flooded by rain in Sodran village. — File photo/AP
A rescue worker carries an elderly woman from an area flooded by rain in Sodran village. — File photo/AP

ISLAMABAD: An estimated 2,000 schools were destroyed across Punjab, the country's worst-hit province in 2014's spell of heavy rains and floods that have left 318 people dead and more than 500 injured, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said.

Punjab has been the worst-hit province due to rains and floods, where more than 1.7 million of the population is affected. According to the NDMA, nearly 17,000 houses have been fully destroyed.

Over 1,900 schools across the province were also damaged and remained non-operational. According to media reports, 250 schools were affected in Punjab's Jhang district alone.

On the directives of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, NDMA in collaboration with humanitarian organisations has initiated an assessment drive to calculate damages in the districts of Mandi Bahauddin, Hafizabad, Chiniot, Jhang and Multan.

The premier has been making daily visits to the flood-affected areas, promising aid and rehabilitation to the displaced people.

Know more: Pakistan floods trigger fresh dam debate

Finance Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar said that Pakistan had received assistance for rehabilitation of flood victims from other countries and international agencies but the government wants to utilise it only after complete scrutiny of total damages.

Dar said despite massive devastation caused by the floods, the government was committed to its resolve to make Pakistan a success story in Asia and achieve growth targets in years to come.

"Although the recent calamity has made it difficult to meet growth targets due to the damage caused to crops, houses and other infrastructure but we are firm in our resolve to make Pakistan a success story in Asia, we will achieve our growth targets in the years to come," the finance minister said.


Government to financially compensate growers


Punjab Agriculture Minister Dr Farrukh Javed on Wednesday said that the government would financially compensate growers whose crops were destroyed during recent devastating floods across the province.

“Agriculture department on the instructions of chief minister Punjab has already constituted various committees to assess losses incurred by farmers,” he said.

The minister said the government had released huge amount for disbursement among farmers losing crops owing to floods. “Cash payments are being made to enable them to stand on their feet," he said adding, "Agricultural equipment will be provided, along with soft term loans.”


Risk of high flood in Sindh decreased


The Flood Forecasting Division Lahore has intimated that according to latest hydrological conditions and breaching of embankments between Qadirabad and Punjnad on River Chenab, the risk of high to very high flood levels at Guddu and Sukkur has decreased.

As a result, River Indus at Guddu and Sukkur may attain medium to high flood levels ranging between 400,000 cusecs to 500,000 cusecs from September 16 to 18.

The expected water level in Sindh is likely to remain low because of several breaches in Punjab, reports Radio Pakistan.

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