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PESHAWAR: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday visited the flood-hit areas of Kanju in District Swat to review the rescue efforts underway and announced Rs10billion relief package for the flood-affected areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

PM Shehbaz while talking to reporters in Kunja, Swat said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan will get a grant of Rs10 billion each while the federal government will provide Rs15 billion to Sindh for rehabilitation and relief efforts after floods wreaked havoc across Pakistan.

Moreover, he said that the government is also giving Rs25,000 to each family affected by the catastrophe, while those families who have lost loved ones will be getting Rs1 million each.

He further assured that the money will be distributed in a transparent manner and put to good use, through the help of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA).

The PM reaffirmed his commitment to utilize all available resources for rehabilitation of flood victims across the country.

Shehbaz Sharif thanked the friendly countries for providing their donations and relief goods to the people of Pakistan in this critical hour.

“Presidents of Turkey, UAE and Iran have vowed to help Pakistan in whatever way possible,” he informed.

“Flights containing relief goods from the UAE and Turkey have arrived,” he said, adding that these goods are being distributed by the PDMA and NDMA.

He also thanked the United Nations for launching a ‘Flash Appeal’ of $160million for Pakistan, assuring that he will personally ensure that the money is put to good use.

The premier regretted the wrong planning which greatly caused the destruction of hotels, highways, houses and other infrastructure in scenic areas of Swat.

He said a survey will be launched to ascertain the damages of the standing crops of cotton, rice and other agricultural products caused by the floods across the country.

The Prime Minister said the government will announce a package for the farmers whose crops and cattle are affected by the floods.

The Prime Minister thanked the Chief of Army Staff and Air Chief for assisting civil administration and NDMA in relief and rescue activities.

The Prime Minister expressed satisfaction over the relief activities in the area.

He directed the Frontier Works Organization to take immediate steps for re-opening of closed roads and its rehabilitation on urgent basis.

Shehbaz Sharif also interacted with flood victims in Kanju and Kalam area and inquired about the difficulties of affectees.

He was briefed that forty-six bridges have been destroyed in Swat district by devastating flood besides greatly affecting infrastructure in Bahrain and Matta areas.

He was also informed that twenty-two people have lost their lives in recent floods and rains related incidents in Swat. During his visit to Kalam, the premier directed relevant authorities to evacuate tourists immediately.

The PM was briefed that six helicopters of the Pakistan Army were currently being used to save tourists and bring them to safer destinations, while as many as 700 tourists were still left and are expected to be rescued by tomorrow.

The prime minister directed expediting the operation of shifting the people to safe areas. He arrived in Swat to review the losses and rescue, relief and rehabilitation efforts. PM Shehbaz also directed the Frontier Works Organisation (FWO) to restore the damaged roads on an emergency basis.

Upon the direction of the prime minister, a helicopter arrived there to airlift the tourists on an emergency basis. The prime minister directed for expediting the operation of shifting of the people to safe areas.

The prime minister arrived here to review the losses and rescue, relief and rehabilitation efforts. He also directed the Frontier Works Organization (FWO) to restore the damaged roads on an emergency basis.

On the occasion, the prime minister also met a number of people and tourists and inquired about their issues. He assured that the federal government would take all possible steps to assist them in this hour of need.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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