Natural and man made disasters in Bijapur

 Words fail to express the misery caused by the deluge for over a week.
Words also fail to explain the indifference of the bureaucracy and the State government in addressing the problems and soothing the tattered souls of the people, who are victims of the worst rain havoc the district has ever witnessed.

Thousands of houses that had cradled generations and had withstood calamities have collapsed becoming a watery grave for the residents. Thousands have been wounded and hundreds of villages have been surrounded by turbulent water of rivers and streams that have been flowing in full spate. The  roads are filled with knee-deep water everywhere. The underground drainage system has completely given away throwing its contents on to the roads. Due to power cuts, there are no  flour mills grinding grain.
The fact that some ‘intelligent’ folks were seen fishing on the roads of the City, showed the dire straits of the district.

When one visited the villages, the ghastly scene of hundreds of houses and humble dwellings that had come down like a pack of cards said it all.
Water had very mercilessly gushed into almost every house without making any discrimination between the rich or the poor, between one caste or another.

Disaster Management Cell

The damage was due to a natural cause. And to meet such disasters, a high power ‘Disaster Management Cell’ would be set up consisting of all department heads under the chairmanship of the deputy commissioner. But never in the history had the district administration of Bijapur shown any concern about the impending disasters.
Citizens complained that the district administration should have kept the people warned of disasters and the necessary safety measures to be taken.

But it seems that in the case of Bijapur district, the Disaster Management Cell was not prepared at all, as it was under the assumption that the district would not face any disasters.

It is not the first time that   the district has witnessed disasters caused due to floods.
Just two years back, hundreds of villages on the banks of river Bhima and Krishna were  flooded. Even then, the suffering of the people was almost of the same magnitude.
But even then, the district administration was not prepared in spite of the apprehensions expressed by the villagers. Instead, the politicians and the district officials got engaged in a blame game criticising the Maharashtra government for the sudden release of water from its dams.

But not a single boat was arranged, no relief centres were opened and no measures to shift those vulnerable villagers  were taken.

Situation worse

The situation now is even worse. The indifferent district administration has woken up from its slumber after total damage has been caused. Now they are left with no other work than issuing statements about the disbursement of compensation amount, the number of deaths and house collapse. Added to the problems of the district administration, it has to bear the pressure of pseudo concerns of the ministers and the chief minister, who come to make aerial surveys.

It is time some permanent solutions are worked out. Most important of all, citizens said, the district administration should be whipped and be made responsible.

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