Waquar Hasan | Caravan Daily
PATNA – As there were complaints of lackluster approach from the government to flood relief work in Bihar, Bihar’s religious organizations like Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) and Student Islamic Organization (SIO) along with other NGOs came forward to provide relief to the flood victims.
They rescued people whose houses were submerged in the flood water and provided them food and other necessary items. Hundreds of the cadres associated with the JIH and SIO have been conducting relief works since September 25 in Patna, Katihar and Bhagalpur since the state was witnessing heavy rain.
People from 1,400 villages of 90 blocks in 15 districts in Bihar were left stranded due to flooding. At least 73 people have died and more than 20 lakh people are estimated to be affected.
Bihar SIO’s zonal president Tahoor Anwar told Caravan Daily that they have provided relief to around 10,000 people in Patna and Katihar alone.
“When Patna witnessed the fury of flood, the government relief works were very slow. People were extremely worried. Then, SIO and Jamaat decided to carry out relief works. When we have started relief works, there was no relief from the government as well as any other NGO. It was raining constantly. When the rain abated, others came out for the relief works,” said Anwar.
As the flood is slowly abating, the affected areas are going to witness unhygienic situations and fear of spreading new diseases. Now, both organizations are holding cleaning activities and organising medical health camps.
Anwar said that they have hired a boat and carried out the relief activities day in, day out. The work is still undergoing. He blamed the JDU-BJP government for failing to handle the flood situation and to carry out the relief works. He said that Bihar witnessed flood every now and then but the government does not pay attention to resolve the flood issues.
“Araria and Katihar witness flood every year. But the government has not any plan to make arrangements to resolve the issue. If the government would have done something for resolving it, the area would not have witnessed such a devastation. It does not show its interest to tackle the issue,” SIO zonal president said.
Bihar Jamaat’s president Rizwan Islahi said that Bhagalpur touched the danger level of flood but it has not caught media attention. So, his organization has carried out massive relief activities in Bhagalpur too.
He said that in Patna, his cadres constantly worked for rescuing people and providing them urgent reliefs in early 5 days.
“For the first day, we did not get boat to carry out relief work. We faced a lot of difficulties in handling relief work. We had approached to the NDRF (National Disaster Response Force) but they were already undergoing shortage of boats. The next day, we talked to the boat-sailor. Then, we constantly carried out relief activities from 28 September to 2 October,” said Islahi.
In the flood-hit posh areas of Patna, we distributed food to many such people who were hungry for three days. Even deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi was trapped in the deluge.
Islahi said that people were hanging the billboard on the front of their houses written ‘help me’. His cadres reached them with relief works. They rescued many ageing people and children. Many people over there were not willing to leave their flooded houses for the fear of losing costly belongings and they were provided with necessary help.