IN A sort of rerun of the gas tragedy compensation process, a veritable crowd of citizens continues to throng the district Collectorate even a fortnight after the flood of August 13/14, trying to push through applications for the relief assistance and hoping to get more.
Despite the fact that compensation has already been distributed to 41,000-odd families, everyday a number of residents approach the authorities making fresh demands, most of them after hearing rumours that more compensation from Central funds are in the offing.
The crowd that gathers everyday at Collectorate is so heavy that the related counter has been shifted outside the main premises. Given the zeal of the crowd, the authorities have started apprehending some mishap.
Besides, the political leaders are also active to get some settlements and localities declared as the flood-affected. There are rumours among the people in such localities that they would get more assistance once their name is added to the list of flood victims. Some people are even selling the so-called application forms at a price of Rs 10.
After the survey, the district administration has already identified 48,000-odd families as flood-affected and has distributed assistance to 41,000.
About 90 per cent of these were already given the cheques of financial assistance. Some officials, however, said that it was possible that some of the flood victims could not be covered under this survey. But the number of such families could be very thin and not like the crowd that gathers at the Collectorate, they added.
As per the part 6 (4) of MP Revenue Book Circular, in case of any calamity like flood, the financial assistance could be given to the poor, landless and destitute etc. The officials clarified that this is not the compensation and the financial assistance as relief.
The relief for those who lost or got damaged their household goods during flood are being given assistance up to Rs 2000. For the total destruction of concrete house, a relief up to Rs 40,000 could be given.
When asked, district Collector S K Mishra said that in case the people submitted the applications on the false grounds, the district administration would register the cases against them. He said that the distribution of financial assistance would be completed soon.
On the other hand, social activist Abdul Jabbar said that it is unfortunate that some people find opportunity of politicising this issue. The administration could not ascertain the facts properly.
Some of genuine flood victims could not get the relief but influential people managed to get financial assistance for their supporters. He, however, said that it is unfortunate that some people turned the relief work into their occupation.