Church slams Kerala government for poor Ockhi relief operations

Thiruvananthapuram : Archbishop M.Susaipakiam of Trivandrum on Saturday slammed the the state’s Pinarayi Vijayan government for not doing a proper rehabilitation programme in wake of Cyclone Ockhi, while complimenting the Tamil Nadu government for rising to the occasion. Addressing reporters here, Archbishop M.Susaipakiam of Trivandrum said they were told that the political leadership is busy with their party Congress and other things. “While the total dead in Kerala on account of Ockhi was 146, the compensation has been handed over to just 49. But in Tamil Nadu, the compensation has been given to 146 dead,” he said. The Church leadership also demanded that a social audit should be conducted in the way the funds for Ockhi relief and rehabilitation have been spent. Even as the Church says that the total dead is 146, according to the Kerala government figures, 52 people were killed and 91 remain missing. Cyclone Ockhi struck Kerala’s southern districts on November 30 last year and the worst affected were two fishing villages in the state capital and a huge majority of the affected belonged to the Latin archdiocese. The Church leadership also pointed out that they have so far spend Rs 14 lakh for medical relief to the affected, besides they have held numerous counselling sessions in the coastal hamlets and that also has cost them a good sum of money, Business Standard reported. The Kerala government had informed the ongoing assembly session that the process of giving compensation to the families of the missing was underway and it would be done once the formalities are over. It had, in January, announced that while the compensation to the families of the dead would be given Rs 2 million each and the same amount would be given to the families of the fishermen who have gone missing, but only after verification. It had then started giving a monthly allowance of Rs 10,000 each to the families of the missing fishermen.

Source: TopStory- Matters India

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