Saturday, October 2

Govt requires billions, continuous assistance

Considering Punjab government is yet to finalise figures of damaged infrastructure, washed away houses and livestock, crops and industrial set-ups, the provincial political bigwigs want to bag billions of rupees to reconstruct buildings and roads besides rehabilitating the displaced people.
At the donors’ conference held on Wednesday last at Islamabad, the govt has come up with the initial data as per which 1,778 mauzas are adversely affected in 11 districts, 850,000 families/households, 5.23 million acres area, 50,000 plus houses, 19m livestock, 817 poultry farms, crops on 1.712m acres incurring financial loss of Rs 80.73bn, 461 and 67 water channels and bunds respectively, and 975 roads of 3750 kilometres length have been damaged. The worst-hit are the health providing facilities, water supply schemes, machineries, and educational institutions besides roads and irrigation infrastructure.
Out of 36 districts of the Punjab, 8 districts (Mianwali, Khushab, Bhakkar, Layyah, Muzaffargarh, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rajanpur and Rahim Yar Khan) have been severely affected, while another four have suffered lesser degree of damage. In these districts, besides others, municipal infrastructure in around 150 union councils falling in around 30 TMAs have been badly damaged and need rehabilitation and reconstruction, while most this infrastructure is located in small to medium towns and rural areas.
2920 public schools have been damaged out of which 155 are higher secondary schools, 269 elementary and 2469 are primary, while for hundreds of thousands displaced people public schools are the refuge. For the purpose, 2,064 schools are being used as relief camps.
Secondly for hospitals, 23 Districts were affected, while only six have been categorised as most affected districts – Muzaffargarh, Rajanpur, DG Khan, Mianwali, Layyah and Rahim Yar Khan. Out of these, Muzaffargarh and Rajanpur faced the major brunt of the floods and faced tremendous devastation and wide-spread dislocation. Of these districts, 55 hospitals have been earmarked, which include 44 BHUs, 7 RHCs and 4 THQHs.
For under Housing, Urban Development and Public Health Engineering Department, 201 water schemes are said to have been affected by floods, while 15 are inaccessible so far.
Initial assessment indicates that 1200 roads having a damaged length of 32 kilometres need reconstruction. However, the cost and damage may swell one the water fully recedes from the inundated damaged roads.
The unprecedented floods has done a considerable damage to Irrigation, flood protection and drainage infrastructure especially in the districts of Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Muzaffargarh, DG Khan, Rajanpur and Rahim Yar Khan.
The livestock sector has been badly affected and related infrastructure is damaged in the badly hit districts of Punjab including Layyah, Mianwali, Khushab, Bhakkar, Muzaffargarh, D.G. Khan, Rajanpur and Rahim Yar Khan. 5.4442 cattle heads, excluding poultry, have been affected, while 4193 animals have been reported killed, and 663 poultry farms have been damaged as well. Secondly, 9 civil veterinary hospitals, 65 dispensaries and 2 artificial insemination centres have been either completely or partially damage.

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