J&K floods: Threats loom large over valley after waters recede

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Rehabilitation of the survivors will be a challenging task
With reports of water receding in the flood-hit regions of Jammu and Kashmir the authorities have started collecting human and animal bodies floating in the streets. Now, the threat of an epidemic and other water borne diseases is looming large over entire Kashmir valley, which is in the grip of worst-ever floods in its history.

Threat of epidemic looming large

The state may have got relief from incessant rain and floods but is now going to reel under the aftermath of the natural disaster. Local administration has cited reports of bodies trapped beneath debris but the scale of the disaster would only become clear once the water recedes.

The decomposition of bodies and nearly 2,500 livestock killed in the disaster will trigger epidemic in the region. It will be a major challenge for the rescue teams to collect the dead bodies as soon as possible and bury them.

The consumables and perishables stored in the houses would also start rotting which will also trigger diseases and add up to the rescue teams' woes.

Identification of bodies

The administration and rescue teams will face problems while identifying dead and decomposed bodies. The local authorities will also face problems in searching and locating the missing people.

Scarcity of food and drinking water

Another challenge the people living in the region will face is scarcity of proper drinking water and food. The unavailability of proper drinking water will make people's lives difficult. The Army and rescue teams can supply food to the people living in affected regions but providing clean drinking water will be a tough task.

Loot, robbery and black marketing

Anti-social elements are going on rampage to loot shops and houses all across the valley which has added to the woes of the flood victims. Reports of survivors becoming prey to the greed of private air careers and outright robbery on their way back home have already started coming.

People are forced to bear the over charging of the airline companies who are ignoring the guidelines of the Director General of Civil Aviation's (DGCA) cap of Rs 2800 per ticket.

Taking advantage of the situation, the private airlines are reportedly charging Rs 4,000 per tickets from the passengers. The passengers are complaining about valuables packed inside their luggage are also being pilfered and there is no one to take responsibility for the same.

Also, cases of public loot of shops and godowns, for edibles and other necessary goods, are very common in such times. Hoarding and black marketing too increase in times like these.

Thus, state machinery will face a daunting task of preventing such loots and keep a check over hoarding and black marketing.

Shortage of medical facilities

The most important thing needed after any natural disaster is the proper medication of people injured in calamities and vaccination to prevent others from getting infected with diseases. Shortage of medical facilities have always been reported in such times.

The state and central machinery will face yet another challenge of spraying insecticides and pesticides in every nook and corner to prevent mosquitoes and other insects, responsible for triggering epidemic.

Rehabilitation of the survivors

Experts are also of the view that most of the houses in the valley have now become uninhabitable. Hence, both the centre and state government will face a tough task of building the infrastructure and ensuring rehabilitation of the survivors. Given the tough terrains of the entire Kashmir valley the construction of houses in the region is not an easy task.

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