0.3m people affected by Chitral floods

Published July 22, 2015
An army rescue team loads relief goods on a helicopter in Chitral for flood-affected people. — APP
An army rescue team loads relief goods on a helicopter in Chitral for flood-affected people. — APP

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government on Tuesday said around 300,000 people had been affected by the flash floods in the northern district of Chitral.

Information minister Mushtaq Ghani told reporters at the Peshawar Press Club that roads, power transmission system and water schemes across the district were worst hit by the natural calamity.

He said 26 villages were worst hit by floods.

The minister said upper parts of Chitral was cut-off, while in Kuragh, raging currents washed away Chitral-Booni Road, stranding around 200,000 people.

He said Kalash valley with a population of 25,000 and Lotkuh tehsil with a population of over 60,000 were also cut off.

Ghani said the government had allocated Rs140 million for the rehabilitation of flood-affected infrastructure in Chitral.

He said of the funds allocated, Rs100 million was for the rehabilitation of roads, Rs30 million for restoration of drinking water supply and Rs10 million for repairs of irrigation channels.

The minister said 20 tonnes of relief goods were dispatched to the district, while another 20 tonnes of goods would be sent today (Wednesday).

He said the Chitral deputy commissioner had been authorised to use Rs20 million funds from the district relief account.

Ghani said the flooding had destroyed 103 houses in Chitral and partially damaged 63, while 25 water supply schemes were destroyed.

He said roads from Chitral to Booni, Orguch, Garam Chashma, Bambouret and Mastuj were badly damaged in the calamity.

The minister said the floods washed away 30 percent of trees in Shoghar, Mastuj, Garam Chashma and Oveer villages and damaged 40 percent of cultivable land in the district.

“The flash floods also washed away nine bridges and buildings of a hotel, a private college and a power station in Chitral,” he said.

The minister said the secretaries of public health and communication and works departments had been sent to Chitral to access damages caused by flash floods.

He said the army and Chitral Scouts were helping the district government handle the crisis.

Ghani said PTI chief Imran Khan and Chief Minister Pervez Khattak would visit Chitral today (Wednesday).

JI, ANP CRITICISE GOVT: The Awami National Party and Jamaat-i-Islami on Tuesday criticised the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf-led government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for allocating Rs1 million for the flood-hit people of Chitral.

In a news release issued here, ANP leader Asfandyar Wali Khan regretted the losses caused by flash floods in Chitral and asked the government to reach out to the calamity victims for rescue and relief.

He said Chitralis had no 0.3m affected by Chitral floods food and drinking water and had lost contact with other parts of the country.

Asfandyar criticised the government for allocating Rs1 million for the flood-hit families in Chitral.

“That is a meagre amount compared to the losses they (people of Chitral) have suffered due to floods,” he said.

In a press statement issued here, JI provincial chief Professor Ibrahim Khan criticised the chief minister for announcing only Rs1 million for the flood-hit Chitral.

He said the government should allocate a hefty amount of money to help flood victims in Chitral.

The JI leader said Al-Khidmat Foundation, the party’s welfare organisation, was helping Chitralis restore water channels.

He said the people, whose houses were destroyed by flooding, would also be supported.

Professor Ibrahim said senior provincial minister Inayatullah Khan would go to Chitral today (Wednesday) to oversee relief activities.

He said provincial president of Al-Khidmat Foundation Noorul Haq would also reach Chitral today (Wednesday) for distribution of cash to flood victims for the restoration of small water channels.

The JI leader said the welfare organisation had already dispatched trucks loaded with food items to the calamity-hit district.

Published in Dawn, July 22nd, 2015

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