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HP: Relief Inadequate, Need Resettlement In Safer Place, Say Villagers Hit By Rain Fury

Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu has, however, said that the amount of immediate relief to the affected families for partially damaged houses has been increased from Rs 5,000 to Rs 1 lakh.

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Waterlogging after rain in South Dinajpur
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Shimla district have demanded that they be resettled in safer locations since their houses have suffered considerable damage and some even developed cracks following intense rains last month.

The villagers in the district's Racholi panchayat area have been complaining that the relief provided by the state government following the cloudburst on July 25 was too inadequate. Many people continue to live with their relatives while others are lodged in the village's government school since their houses have become unsafe following the rain fury.

"My house has been damaged and the government has given Rs 5,000 as relief which is too little. We want that the villagers severely affected by the natural calamity to be settled at a safe place," said Japti Devi, a resident of Sunda village.

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"Everything got damaged because of the cloudburst. So far, we have not received any help from the government," an elderly villager claimed. Another villager, Santa Devi, said her family owned a cow and it was their only source of income. "It got washed away in the flash flood following the cloudburst. Now we do not even have the money to pay our daughter's college fees," she said. 

Rampur Sub-Divisional Magistrate Nishant Tomar said that the loss due to last month's natural calamity has been assessed and relief would be provided based on the parameters fixed by the government. The opposition BJP has slammed the ruling Congress government in Himachal Pradesh, alleging that the relief being provided to the people was inadequate.

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BJP leader Jai Ram Thakur had accused the Congress government in Himachal Pradesh of discriminating against people based on their political affiliations while distributing relief in the rain-battered areas. The former chief minister had alleged that there have been complaints that persons who did not suffer any loss got relief while the actual victims of rains and floods were deprived of aid.

The practice of distributing relief in cash must stop and all payments be made through direct bank transfer. The financial assistance given by the Union government be distributed in a fair and transparent manner, Thakur said.

Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu has, however, said that the amount of immediate relief to the affected families for partially damaged houses has been increased from Rs 5,000 to Rs 1 lakh.

He has said that the government is also contemplating increasing relief for people whose houses were completely damaged. Sukhu has also assured people that there won't be any financial constraint for restoring normalcy in the disaster-affected regions of the state.

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