No help from district administration for landslide-hit Bengal

  • Pramod Giri, Hindustan Times, Siliguri
  • Updated: Jul 16, 2015 14:37 IST
Landslides have thrown life out of gear in North Bengal. (HT Photo)

Scores of landslide-hit locals at Algara block II in Kalimpong sub-division have been left to fend for themselves, with not even a word of assurance from the district administration on catering to the needs of the affected children.

Members of Siliguri Welfare Organisation (SWO), who recently visited the landslide-hit areas in Kalimpong sub-division, said that the relief camps don’t have provisions to protect the sheltered locals from rain, cold and damp weather, leeches and snakes. They said the people feel insecure and often stay up late at night fearing trouble.

Sources said children, less than eight years of age, have been going short of a minimum diet and potable water at these relief camps.

Dipankar Chakraborty, the working president and Pulak Sengupta, the vice president of SWO said that of the 98 affected families in the Santook gram-panchayat area, 20 families, comprising 103 members in total, have been huddled in two relief camps on Rikiusm view point.

Another 130 members of 28 families have taken shelter at Fulmati Primary School. Other than getting a meagre meal of rice and lentils by the local panchayat, they are deprived of necessary protein intake.

The local administration has not arranged emergency medical supplies for affected locals sheltered at the schools and nearby relief camps, the SWO members said.

As many 48 families, who had been living in roadside houses before the calamity, have been rendered homeless. These families have since been sheltered in two relief camps.

“The condition of more than 60 kids, below eight-years-of-age, is alarming as they’ve been going without proper diet,” Chakraborty said. "They can’t even attend their schools", he said.

Considering the plight of the landslide-hit in relief camps, the SWO has decided to collect relief materials and baby food in Siliguri. The relief materials would be sent to the affected areas on July 18.

A two-member team of doctors, carrying sufficient medicines, would also hold medical camps for the landslide victims, said a press release from the SWO.

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