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It's raining 'ghost' relief camps wherever Gilani goes in inundated Pakistan

By Samyuktha

Islamabad, Aug.18 (ANI): While millions of people struggle to wade through the devastating floods in Pakistan, the local administration is seen offering little help to the victims, and complaints regarding 'ghost' relief camps being set up during Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani visits to affected areas are mounting by the day.

According to reports, a relief camp magically came up in Dera Ismail (DI) Khan just hours before Gilani was to visit the region.

Gilani had to face the ire of people who protested outside the DI Khan airport shouting slogans- "Fake camp unacceptable", which prompted the journalists accompanying the Prime Minister to raise question about the issue.

"Why should I tell a lie while observing fast, it was set up this morning," The Nation quoted an elderly man outside a camp in Shorkot village, as saying.

Following persistent queries from journalists, Gilani enquired about the issue from the District Coordination Officer (DCO) of the region Khan Bukhsh Marwat, who admitted that the camp was certainly established in the morning.

"But it is a genuine camp you can monitor it now on," Marwat told reporters.

Later, while talking to reporters on his special aircraft, Gilani put the blame on the provincial government.

"You tell me whether this was my governance or that of the province. Our policy is that of reconciliation and that should not be taken as our weakness or something like lacking of credibility," he said.

This was not for the first time that reports of fake relief camps have come into the news.

Last week, the Balochistan government was accused of setting up a fake flood-relief camp during Gilani's visit to Sohbatpur village.

When helicopters carrying Gilani and his cabinet members landed in the village local officials showcased the relief camp, consisting of empty tents.

The tents were brand new, untouched and without any sign of wear and tear due to the rough weather and floodwater.

Over 1,600 people have been killed and 15 million affected as raging floodwaters continue to wreak havoc in the country.

It first struck Balochistan on July 22 before inundating the worst hit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

In addition to causing major human loses, it has destroyed hundreds of thousands of homes, washed away crops and livestock. (ANI)

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