In view of the festive season, the government has increased financial support to flood and landslide victims of over 33 districts under various categories.
A meeting of the Central Natural Disasters Relief Committee presided over by acting Prime Minister Bamdev Gautam on Saturday took a decision to release Rs 3,000 in cash as expenses for Dashain, Tihar and Chhath festivals to each family affected by recent floods and landslides.
“A total of 34,478 flood-affected families will get Rs 3,000 each in cash through the District Natural Disasters Relief Committee at the earliest in view of festivals,” Under Secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs, Jhanka Dhakal, told Republica following the meeting.
The MoHA is releasing a total of Rs 103.4 million in cash to flood-hit districts as early as possible under this category. Though the government had earlier decided to provide a minimal amount of only Rs 500 to flood-hit people for the purpose, it decided to increase the amount following criticism from multiple quarters.
The committee also increased amount of Rs 35 to Rs 50 for food given to each affected individual a day for the next 30 days. The total number of flood and landslides victims of four districts –Banke, Bardiya, Surkhet and Dang — to receive such amount stands at 173,438.
Earlier the government had decided to provide Rs 35 to each individual a day for arranging food. The MoHA is releasing a total of Rs 260 million especially to those four districts under this category.
The meeting also decided to conduct food for work in the flood-hit districts. The Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development will conduct food-for-work programs in flood-hit districts. “Under this program, people will receive certain amount as wages on a daily basis and restore damaged houses and other infrastructures themselves at the local level,” Under Secretary Dhakal said.
Similarly, the Ministry of Health will conduct health camps and Ministry of Education will work to restore damaged school buildings in the flood-hit districts.
The Ministry of Home Affairs has released a total of Rs 320 million to the flood-hit districts so far. It had received over Rs 320 million released by the Prime Minister´s Office under the Prime Minister´s Relief Fund.
“We have received the amount from the Prime Minister´s Office as we sought earlier,” Dhakal added.
The committee´s decision comes at a time when thousands of people, particularly in flood-hit districts of the Mid-western region such as Surkhet, Dang, Banke and Bardiya are in dire need of relief packages.