Pakistan: PM vows to rebuild damaged houses in quake-hit areas, announces Rs.2.90 billion

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ZIARAT, Nov 17 (APP) : Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Monday that the government would rebuild the houses damaged in the October 29 earthquake in Balochistan and announced financial assistance of Rs2.90 billion for the purpose. Addressing cheque distribution ceremony here at the worst quake affected village Waam, the prime minister said that he would direct the concerned officials of National Disaster Management Authority-NDMA to take initiatives for rebuilding of the damaged houses on war footing in quake-hit areas.

He said that the concerned officials were making estimates of agricultural loans and utility bills of the quake-stricken people, the government would consider and subsequently write off their agricultural loans and their power dues.

He said that the teams had carried out transparent survey of the losses and damages caused by the tremor and submitted their reports along with photographs of the damaged houses.

The prime minister said he and the President had already announced compensation of Rs0.3 million and Rs0.2 million respectively for heirs of those who lost their ones in the earthquake on October 29 last. Besides, he and the President had announced Rs0.1 million and Rs50,000 respectively for each injured of the quake.

He asked the people not to politicize the issues of survey and rehabilitation process in the quake-stricken areas.

"So for 17600 tents,2750 winterized tents,98000 blankets,300 single room shelter houses and 11767 tons of ration have already been distributed and 2400 tents,3000 winterized tents,92000 blankets,8000 single room shelter house and 1100 tons of rati on will be distrubated soon to the quake-hit-people," the prime minister said.

He expressed the hope that their would be no shortage of ration and essential items in the quake-hit areas.

Referring to health facilities in quake-hit areas, he said there were adequate quantities of medicines and mobile health teams of the provincial government were ensuring provision of facilities to quake survivors in their respective villages.

The prime minister said that he would look into the matter of assistance for flood-stricken people of Balochistan as the previous government had reneged the rehabilitation of the flood-affected people of the province. "The people of the province must get their rights," he said.

He said that the incumbent government was stepping up efforts for ending sense of despondencies among the people of the province. In this regard the government would pursue policy of reconciliation in the province in order to strengthen the federation, he added.

He said that Balochistan was given significance and representation in the federal cabinet in order to end sense of deprivation from the province.

He said that federal government would resolve problems of Balochistan in collaboration with the friendly countries. In this connection promotion of mineral, agriculture and other sectors would be encouraged in order to end backwardness in the province. Besides, maximum industries would be set up for the purpose in the province, he added.

He expressed his deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives and prayed for recovery of the injured.

He extended his profound gratitude to all those countries, provincial governments, international and national NGOs, army, FC and volunteers who helped the quake-affected people following the tremor.

Later, the prime minister distributed cheque among the quake-hit people. Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Muhammad Aslam Raisani, Governor Nawab Zulfiqar Ali Magsi and other provincial and federal ministers and senior officials were also present on the occasion.