By Nisar Mahmood

Peshawar: More than 660,000 people were still inaccessible in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
even 12 days after the floods that have affected 4.5 million people in the
province and rendered 885615 persons homeless, Information Minister Mian
Iftikhar Hussain said here Tuesday.

In his briefing on daily developments in the situation, he said 150,000 people
in Kohistan, 350,000 in Swat, 100,000 in Dir Upper and 60,000 in Shangla were
inaccessible as all roads and link bridges had been washed away by the floods.

The minister said 140465 houses had been destroyed and
the number of destroyed shops, roads, bridges and other infrastructure was
increasing with each passing day as information was being gathered after
accessing the affected areas.

The minister, who had just returned from Dera Ismail Khan along with the Chief
Minister, senior ministers and army officers, said the destruction in southern
districts, especially DI Khan, was beyond imagination.

“Like Malakand division, Charsadda, Peshawar and Nowshera everything was
destroyed in DI Khan. According to official figures 39 deaths and 69 injuries
were confirmed in the Dera Ismail Khan division,” the minister said.

He said 162 villages, nine bridges, 526 kilometres roads, 79 government
buildings, 33,061 homes, 44 educational institutions and four hospitals had been
destroyed besides destruction of crops over 80,000 acre of land. He said 36,615
homes, 37 health facilities and nine telephone exchanges were partially damaged.

About relief activities, he said 8,600 tents, 55 water pumps and 77 boats had
been provided to the Dera Ismail Khan division while food packages and cooked
meal and other relief items were provided to the affected people in and out of
camps. “Relief activities in other parts of the province also continued and the
provincial government had released Rs725.51 for relief work to the district
administrations,” Mian Iftikhar explained.

To a question, he said the district administrations’ financial demands for
relief would be met but no leniency and misappropriation would be tolerated.
About foreign aid received so far, the minister said the US had released $35
million, UK 30 million pounds, Germany two million euros, Norway $8 million and
China $10 million while the Islamic Development Bank had provided $10 million
soft loan. The US is contributing 50 per cent of the food provided by World Food
Programme, he added.

He said helicopter service in Swat was suspended due to bad weather for two days
but it resumed on Tuesday and airlifted food and relief items to the far-flung
areas of Kabal and Matta tehsils.

Food and other necessary items were distributed in different parts of the
affected districts by Pakistan Army, he said, adding that the government
agencies and NGOs were providing medical treatment to patients in relief camps
and villages, he said.

Meanwhile Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Ameer Haider Khan Hoti announced
Rs.50 million for the district administration to expedite relief activities in
the area. The chief minister said the bereaved families who had lost their near
and dear ones in flood would be compensated Rs.300, 000 each.

The News