Rains lash Kashmir;J&K wants 300 paramedics

RSTV Bureau

flood4After few clear days, rains returned to the Kashmir Valley on Sunday as a bad news for flood victims as it could hamper rescue operations in the submerged areas.

Rainfall accompanied by thunder and lightning lashed Srinagar and other parts of the Valley. The weather had been clear for the past five days after incessant rains led to unprecedented floods in the Valley.

Amid fears of an epidemic breaking out due to floods in Jammu and Kashmir, the state government is gearing up to contain the damage and wants the Centre to speedily send medicines as well as at least 300 paramedic staff.

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said that all assistance will be provided to the state health authorities to tackle any possible epidemic in the aftermath of the devastating floods.

The Union Minister also took a detailed review of the health related relief measures and also took stock of essential medicines and other health care facilities provided.

The Department of Health Services is making arrangements on war-footing, issuing advisories, deploying doctors and paramedics across the Valley besides dispatching drugs and medicines.

The outbreak of epidemic is feared because of filth that has accumulated across the Valley besides the death of animals and their carcasses floating around in the flood waters.

“We are sensitising people about do’s and don’ts,” Saleem-ur Rehman, Director, Health Services, told while pointing to the apprehension about an epidemic breaking out.

He said doctors and paramedic staff are being rushed across the Valley to sensitise people as well as take precautionary measures.

Rehman said the Central government has been “generous” and has sent 30 doctors who have been deployed in various districts of Kashmir.

Drugs and medicines are coming into Kashmir in good flow but the Centre should be little more generous in speedily sending more of such supplies, he said.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had said on Saturday that Kashmir has a history that lives are not lost in floods but in the aftermath of floods.

“Our focus is on provision of medicines and water- purifying medicines like chlorine and lakhs of chlorine tablets have been distributed. We have asked municipalities to activate the sanitation system. Our primary concern is rescue and provision of food, prevention of diseases and epidemics is our priority,” he had said.

Flood triggered by heavy rain in Jammu and Kashmir have claimed around 200 lives so far and left thousands homeless. It has also caused extensive damage to road, rail and telecommunication infrastructure in the state.