NCP MLA demands handing over relief work to Army in flood-hit areas

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Balasore, Jun 22 (UNI) Expressing strong dissatisfaction over relief distribution in the flood-hit Balasore district by the Orissa governmnent,local MLA and NCP leader Mr Arun Dey demanded that the relief operation should be handed over to the army.

Mr Dey told newspersons here that although six days had already passed, not a single officer of the district either visited the flood affected area or was aware of the ground situation.

He alleged that hundreds of people in the marooned villages are virtually starving as no relief material had reached them. The NCP MLA said it was high time the entire relief operation was handed over to the Army.

Lambasting the district administration, Mr Dey said all tall claims by the authority remained on paper only. There has been virtually no stock of food materials in Block and Panchayat offices as claimed by the administration.

''The entire district administration was enjoying a holiday trip in Chandipur and doing nothing. So were the other ministers, the Chief Minister and the Governor, who were making aerial survey for no reason, ''Mr Dey stated.

He said all water sources including tubewells in the flood-hit villages have become contaminated and they should be disinfected.

Mr Dey held the National Highway authority squarely responsible for the flood situation. He warned that if the authorities failed to construct bridges for adequate drainage of water, the people would have to do it themselves.

Orissa Governor M C Bhandare during his brief halt in Chandipur Defence base, after an aerial survey of the flood areas, reviewed the flood situation and relief distribution works with the district administration, the NHAI, the Airforce officers and other officers engaged in the flood operations.

He said necessary steps would be taken to ensure that the National Highways would not bring more misery to the people in the area.

UNI XC DP SJC RSA BST1941

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