Flood-hit people of Balochistan: steps taken by National Disaster Management Authorities disappoint Senate panel
The Senate functional committee on less developed areas has expressed disappointment over the steps taken by National and Provincial Disaster Management Authorities (NDMAs) for flood affected people of Balochistan. A meeting held with Senator Mir Wali Muhammad Badini was given a briefing by the official of NDMA on reconstruction/rehabilitation of work in the flood affected areas.
The NDMA official informed the committee that the authority was not given any fund for reconstruction of affected areas and its scope of work was limited to the relief activities. Additionally, the meeting was informed that after the passage of 18th Constitutional Amendment, disaster management is a provincial subject. The member said that the situation was alarming in Balochistan and the government should take help from donors to provide relief to the victims.
The NDMA official stated that Naseer Abad, Jaffer Abad and Jhal Magsi were badly damaged by floods in the province and the Prime Minister has recently approved a Rs 2.6 billion special package for the three most affected districts of Balochistan. However, the committee expressed dissatisfaction over the measures taken by the federal and provincial government and termed the situation in the province as highly alarming.
According to the National Highway Authority (NHA), flood 2012 also damaged roads and disrupted communication network. The affected roads of NHA included National Highway (N-70) Punjab and Balochistan, Indus Highway (N-55) (Punjab), National Highway (N-50) (Balochistan), National Highway (N-65) (Balochistan) and Karakoram Highway (N-35) (Khyber Pakhtunkhawa).
The NHA claimed that the restoration work was carried out on emergency grounds to open the roads for all types of traffic and NHA’s pre-qualified contractors were mobilised for this purpose. The meeting was informed that long-term repair, after the completion of damage need assessment, to be carried out ascertaining the magnitude of damages.