LAHORE / DERA GHAZI KHAN: Thousands of people in Rajanpur are struggling to return to their dilapidated houses for settling on a self-help basis after the floodwater starts receding.

The roads and passages leading to their villages are still submerged by floodwater and the district administration has failed to clear the roads and restore broken linkages. There were seven hill torrents in Rajanpur’s Kaha, Chachar, Pitok, Sori Shumali, Kala Bagga Khosra, Sori Janobi and Zangi areas.

These hill torrents were cause by heavy rains at Bambli, Jampur, Harand, Chatool, Lundi Saidan, Lalgarh, Meeranpur, Hajipur, Pull Dhundhi, Fazilpur city and several other small villages. As many as 12 people lost their lives while 3,192 were injured during the floods. Besides, 425 schools, 16 hospitals, one college, 318,423 acre crops and 28,646 houses were damaged in the floods.

The government has established 27 relief camps, and 48 medical and 55 veterinary camps to provide support to the people while 564 teams are providing health facilities to the people. The district administration also distributed 16,685 tents, 48,122 ration bags, 1,430 mats, 6,866 bottles of drinking water, 2,000 mosquito nets and 5,583 daigs (of cooked food) among the flood-hit.

WHO, Unicef, Aga Khan Hospital to set up medical camps in flood-hit areas

Most people complain that they have been left in the lurch and are unable to resettle and start a new life after the heavy floods. They say the government has also failed to repair the broken banks and dykes to prevent water from reaching their residential areas. Most people are returning homes on foot, saying they cannot live in tents and camps because the government is not facilitating them.

They say thousands of people have not even tents and are living under the open sky and vulnerable to diseases due to mosquitoes. They say most of them are suffering from diarrhoea after living in the open for the last two to three weeks and they don’t even have medicines.

They are returning homes in the hope of rebuilding these and fixing the damages on their own.

Meanwhile, the district administration claims that it is surveying the areas to get exact figures of the damages and several teams have been sent for the purpose. The officials, it says, will approach every person and register him or her to address their grievances.

DERA GHAZI KHAN: Medical teams of the World Health Organization (WHO), Aga Khan Hospital (AKH) and Unicef will hold medical camps in the flood-affected areas of DG Khan and Rajanpur during the ongoing week, especially for the pregnant women and lactating mothers.

DG Khan Chief Executive Officer (health) Dr Ateeq told Dawn that the health department has sought help from the three international organisations to cope with the post-flood ailments and to provide proper medical care to those affected by the calamity, specially the pregnant and lactating women.

He said 25 teams of the WHO, Unicef and AKH would hold medical camps in as many union councils for at least one month. He added that two medical camps would be held in each UC per day.

He said as per WHO criteria, eight percent of total flood-affected women are considered pregnant, as well as lactating mothers. An estimated number of 100,36 flood-affected women, including the pregnant and lactating ones, are being treated at the medical camps established in 40 flood-hit UCs by the government, he added. He said that vaccination counters had also been set up at every medical camp.

The CEO said as many as 12 ambulances and 35 other vehicles being used by maternity supervisors, were ready to transport the flood-hit pregnant women to different health facilities.

He said maternity services had been restored in private buildings in even the areas badly affected by flood, that include Yaru, Mangrotha, Narri, Triman and Sokarr.

Dr Ateeq said the building of the Basic Health Unit (BHU) in Sokarr tehsil of Taunsa had been declared dangerous, adding that a new building would be constructed at a cost of Rs25 millions there.

Meanwhile, he said, the Sokarr BHU had been made functional in a private building, where maternity services were available round the clock.

He said some 30 health facilities had been hit by continuous downpour and hill torrents, including three BHUs, which had been completely damaged in Taunsa tehsil.

In DG Khan tehsil, he said, the health facilities at Mamoori, Loharwala, Yaru and Kot Mubarak were also badly affected by hill torrents, while maternity services, hygiene kits and food supplements were being provided to flood-affected women at 43 medical camps, including three mobile health units, by the district administration.

Published in Dawn, September 7th, 2022

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