Deluge of relief material in Nepal, yet many await help

Chitwan (Nepal) May 1 (IANS) Nepal has witnessed a deluge of relief material following a massive earthquake, but some survivors have lamented they are yet to get help.

With help coming from all corners of the world, the mountainous nation is now faced with a daunting task of managing relief and ensuring that the essential items, ready-to-eat food, medicines, tents and other relief material reach the places where these are most needed.
However, on the sixth day of the devastating earthquake that killed over 6,000, many locals say that relief is still to come to those in dire need of it.
Sandeep Regmi, working as a house-keeping assistant at a resort in Narayan Ghat, about 150 km from Kathmandu, told IANS that back home in Gorkha district, his mother and sister are forced to live under a ‘taat’ (plastic sheet) as no government help has reached the village which was ravaged by last week’s quake.
The 17-year-old recounted how his one-room mud house has been flattened and “most in the village have been killed”.
With tears in his eyes, he said he was able to speak to his mother and sister by phone two days back.
Locals allege that much of the relief has been concentrated in the Kathmandu Valley while other places like Bhaktapur, Gorkha, Warpak, Pokhara, Rasua, Shulikhel, Bhatechaur and Sindhupalchowk have been comparatively fallen short of assistance.
An official admitted of “shortcomings” and pointed out that the magnitude of the tragedy has overwhelmed the official machinery.
“What has unfolded over the week is beyond our wildest imagination,” said an official in Chitwan, a district where this corresondent stopped en route to other quake-affected areas in Nepal.
He said relief teams from India, China, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Poland, Germany, France, Israel, Malaysia and the Netherlands are in Nepal “trying to do their best”.
The problem, he said, was “improper management of the relief material and poor handling of logistics of the rescue operations”.
(Mohit Dubey can be contacted at [email protected])