GILGIT: The flood victims of Gilgit-Baltistan have been facing shortage of food and drinking water since the calamity has battered the road network.

The GB government has yet to start work to repair roads and bridges, rendering the region almost inaccessible for organisations trying to carry out relief and rehabilitation.

On his part, Chief Minister Khalid Khurshid Khan has accused the federal government of hatching conspiracies against the PTI-led government in Gilgit-Baltistan and discriminating against the region’s flood victims.

According to data provided by the GB disaster management authority, the region was hit by flash floods 112 times from July 1 to Aug 28. Seventeen people lost their lives and six were injured.

A total of 49 roads, 22 power houses, 78 drinking water channels, 500 irrigation channels and 56 bridges have been damaged across GB.

The damage to private property has been estimated at almost four billion rupees.

People in affected areas complained the slow pace of work to restore the road network and electricity connections was making it difficult for aid organisations to reach out to the flood-hit with essential supplies.

Abdul Majeed, a resident of Ghizer, told Dawn that the district was the worst affected place in GB today.

“Many villages have been cut off from other areas. The floods rendered impassable a vital road linking Ghizer to Shansure 10 days ago, but the authorities have turned a blind eye to appeals by us to carry out repairs,” he said.

People in remote villages like Ishkoman, Yasin and Punyal are desperately awaiting the arrival of aid agencies so that their lives could go back to normality, Mr Majeed added.

Karim Hayat, another resident of Ghizer, told Dawn that the people of Darkhut village, in Yasin valley, had decided to rehabilitate a suspension bridge on self-help basis, but the absence of materials had made them helpless.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2022

Categorized in: