Flood victims denied relief for not having toiletsFlood displaced people of Holiya VDC on the banks of Rapti River in Banke district have been worried after the government authorities stopped relief distribution.
Flood displaced people of Holiya VDC on the banks of Rapti River in Banke district have been worried after the government authorities stopped relief distribution.
Local authorities, however, said the government services had been denied to those households who have not constructed toilets.
As the district is being declared an open defecation free zone within mid-April, those households without toilet have been denied state relief, said Local Development Officer (LDO) Jiblal Bhusal. “This rule applies not only to those in Holiya but also all of them in the district who have not constructed toilets,” he said.
Although the government had decided to distribute Rs 5,000 for each of the flood affected households to repair their houses in the region, the displaced victims have been deprived of relief for the past one and half years. As a result, the victims said they were unable to repair their houses. “The government has not provided relief amount to reconstruct houses. How can we build toilet?,” asked Ram Sundar Bahun, a flood victim of Taperi. Around 100 people in Taperi were displaced by the Rapti River floods on August 14 and 15, 2014. As the government could not resettle the flood victims, they have since returned to their own ravaged villages.
The government has so far released around Rs2.3 million in aid to the flood affected Holiya VDC. But the VDC has not yet distributed the aid, stating that the flood victims have not built toilets.
According to latest statistics, 9,143 flood affected families reside in Holiya. Around Rs350 million would be required if the VDC is to distribute aid to all of flood affected households in the district, said Homnath Bhusal, a coordinator of the District Disaster Management Committee. “We are facing problems in distributing relief as the government has sent insufficient funds,” he added.