Alappuzha: Alappuzha, which experienced unprecedented floods at this time last year, is yet to come out of the trauma though the government initiated many schemes like Rebuild Kerala to rehabilitate the victims. Many projects are halfway with several victims languishing in relief camps and a number of them yet to get any compensation.
Kuttanad has again been battered by floods and at least 20, 000 people in the district are living in 101 relief camps. The kids have lost their study materials, schools are shut and over 800 hectares of paddy crops has been lost.
Going by the past experience, the victims are not hopeful of getting any substantial aid from the government. .
Manju Panchaman has been living in the government homoeo clinic at Pandanad West in Chengannur, one of the worst flood-hit areas last year, for the last one year. The government had promised her three cents of land as her house was washed away by the flood. She trusted the words of the local legislator, district collector and panchayat officials. But the officials have failed to find out three cents of land for her and she continues to live on the rooftop with her two sons, husband and the aged mother-in-law.
As of now, eight members, including children from two families, stay there. "We have nowhere to go and we are homeless for the last one year. Whatever happens now we are not concerned," said Aji, 51, an inmate.
Sabu, 36, and his mother Maniyamma of Othente Kunnel colony knocked on the doors of panchayat and taluk offices to get her name listed in the Rebuild project, but in vain. Her neighbour got Rs 2 lakh for maintenance. The officers told her that there was a mix-up in entering the bank account numbers of a group of people, including her, in the area. She was also told that her name was likely to be included in the next list. The rain now has made it impossible for her to stay in the damaged house.
C.K. Maniyan of Kanakassery in Kainakary panchayat says the bund breach has submerged his house which was damaged in the floods last year. He got Rs 60,000 as compensation under the rebuild scheme.
Kuttanad will suffer if bunds are not strengthened with piles and slabs, he says. The unnecessary expenses every year could have been avoided by strengthening them. The government had allocated Rs 1000 crore for Kuttanad, but nothing has been spent here so far, he says . Ambika, 38, Palliparambil, Pandanad, has received no assistance under Rebuild Kerala. This year also her house was damaged. She had erected a structure in place of the old house and was staying there with her two sons and husband.
Shobana, 61, of Palliparambil is scared of living in her house, which may collapse any time. She applied thrice and submitted documents for compensation, but they were rejected.
As per the data available with the district administration, Rs 380.26 crore was distributed to the beneficiaries whose houses suffered damage between 15 and 74 percent. Maintenance fund was distributed to 88, 140 houses out of a total of 1,00,547 listed houses. Of 2,516 fully damaged houses, 837 were rebuilt. As many as 30,472 registered applicants have been paid Rs 10,000 each, including them in the category of 15 percent damage. In the 16-29 percent damage category, 18,609 beneficiaries were paid while most of the 9,252 beneficiaries registered in the 30-59 -category got benefits. Compensation was also given to the 60-74 percent damaged category.