Bring succour, villagers tell officials who come for assessment of damage
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s Saturday’s diktat and relentless agitations of the locals made officials speed up the relief operations on Sunday in the cyclone-affected areas of the Uddanam region.
With 50 IAS, IPS and Deputy Collector rank officials being posted as special officers to oversee the food and water supply and restoration of power, food and water packets to many villages such as Koddabhadra, Padmanabhapuram, Vajrapukotturu, Palasa and other places were supplied compared to the last three days. The food was served at the temporary camps in these places where people faced near starvation.
Hundreds of people thronged those camps to have meals.
However, food packets are yet to be supplied in remote areas located close to the sea coast.
In spite of the sincere efforts, a majority of the people are eagerly waiting for restoration of normalcy in their villages.
The government itself estimated that the relief operations should be reached to more than 2.6 lakh people.
Power is yet to be restored in 4,319 villages where more than 32,000 electric poles fell. Minister for Energy Kala Venkata Rao said 5,000 personnel had been brought from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka also to restore the network.
“Power would be restored in Meliyaputti and Vajrapukotturu mandals by Monday. We will keep generators in villages where electricity is yet to be restored. Solar lamps will also be supplied.”
Day of protests
Agitations had become the order of the day in spite of the promises made by public representatives. Many villagers are having heated arguments with officials who come only for assessment instead of bringing relief materials. Several people blocked traffic at Mandasa and Palasa, insisting on water and food packets.
They also sought compensation for their property which was badly damaged.
Fishermen community leaders said it might take many months to recover due to heavy damage to the boats and the nets.
Each boat costs around ₹2 lakh and net more than ₹1 lakh. “People from all walks of life from AP extended their helping to Kerala when it had faced unprecedented devastation due to floods. But such relief measures and helping hand are missing in Srikakulam,” said Chintapalli Suryanarayana, president of the Conventional Fishermen’s Association.