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Kashmir Flood Relief & Rehabilitation Initiative

Pakistan India Peoples’ Forum for Peace and Democracy urges the PM to step up flood relief and rescue work in Kashmir

Press Release 12 September 2014

12 September 2014

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(PAKISTAN INDIA PEOPLES’ FORUM FOR PEACE & DEMOCRACY- INDIA)
C/o: F-10/12, (Basement), Malviya Nagar, New Delhi
Contacts: 09811081240, 09818407882, 011-26687725 Website:www.pipfpd.org Email: pipfpd.india at gmail.com

PRESS RELEASE

September 12, 2014

Pakistan India Peoples’ Forum for Peace and Democracy urges the PM to step up flood relief and rescue work in Kashmir

Urgent appeal to the PM for the immediate mobilization and expansion of further material and human resources

We have been watching with increasing concern and dismay the fast deteriorating situation on the ground – on both sides of the border, especially in the Kashmir valley and the hilly terrains of the Jammu region. The scale of devastation is unprecedented though the armed forces are doing their best. We strongly believe that much more needs to be done on an urgent basis.

As part of the Pakistan India Peoples’ Forum for Peace and Democracy’s [PIPFPD] intervention, we have initiated a coordination effort between groups and individuals to see to it that the people of J&K get additional support, rescue and relief. This, we believe, will strengthen and reinforce the support extended by the State and Central Government agencies.

Relief and Rescue operations are still underway and are yet to reach far too many people in need. Our phone lines and information channels have been inundated by SOS calls and messages seeking basic assistance for water, food, and medicines, from people in relief camps as well as from those still stranded on rooftops, upper floors of buildings and from hospitals.

We are repeatedly being informed, that while all relief material is being collected at Jammu and Srinagar, the distribution of the same is too slow and inadequate. The death toll is rising every minute. The spectre of disease looms large. Instances of the outbreak of infection are being reported, pointing towards more disasters in the waiting. The carcasses of dead animals and no outlet for sewage in waterlogged areas are further compounding the situation.

The Prime Minister has been urged by the PIPFPD to swiftly act on the following:

1. Open the border along J&K so as to save human lives on either side of Kashmir & extend support to the Pakistani government and people’s efforts at overcoming this trans-national disaster. During the post-earthquake situation in 2005, India and Pakistan had come together to save people and property by opening the borders and allowing flow of materials – we request you to take meaningful steps in the same direction.

2. Immediate activation of communication network and in the absence of which, provide Satellite phones wherever necessary.

3. Appeal to and give permission for international relief organisations like International Red Cross (IRC), Doctors Without Borders (MSF), Oxfam, and other disaster management organisations, as well as national relief organizations and groups to be involved.

4. Activate the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) in Relief (short-term) and Rehabilitation (long-term).

5. Involve and engage voluntary individuals and groups – in order to reach more areas.

6. Ensure the immediate distribution of all collected relief items, which have already reached Jammu and Srinagar airports.

7. Send more life saving boats/rafts with relief materials, food, water, water filters, solar lights and medicines to the affected areas.

8. Ensure operation of additional free flights for trained rescue operators, volunteers, relief materials, etc.

9. Free of cost transportation of relief materials by private airlines and Air India.

10. Involve private helicopter operators in the rescue and relief operations.

11. Issue standing instructions to Srinagar airport to receive relief materials by authorized volunteers of relief operations and also issue instruction to all the airports across India to ensure smooth transfer of the relief materials to J&K.

We appeal to the people to do their best in order to save the lives, property and dignity of the people affected by the worst ever floods in living memory of the Kashmir region.

Anuradha Bhasin Jamwal & Asha Hans (Co-Chairpersons)
Jatin Desai (General Secretary)

For further details contact: 09869077718, pipfpd.india at gmail.com