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No scarcity of food stock after natural disaster!

Published : Monday, 17 July, 2017 at 12:00 AM Count : 186

Recently the Prime Minister said the government has enough food stock so that the country's people must not suffer because of flood.  Citing official data, she said there is about 1.06 crore metric tonnes of foodgrains in stock in the country, including the ones in public silos and private, mills and farmers levels. Describing various steps taken by her government for developing the agricultural sector, the PM urged the private sector to supplement the government efforts to expedite the pace of agriculture development.
Last month, deadly mudslides triggered by torrential monsoon rains in southeastern Bangladesh are estimated to have claimed at least 135 lives. This disaster occurred just two weeks after Cyclone Mora killed 9 people and caused significant damage across the region. In addition to mudslides, the rains caused severe flooding in low-lying areas, causing significant damage to road and communication infrastructure. Remote communities in Bandarban, Chittagong and Rangamati districts have been cut off and remain without water, electricity, and food supplies. Communities of Rohingya refugees in Bandarban district may also have been affected. Further mudslides are feared due to continued rainfall.
Initial reports suggest that these mudslides have been the most lethal in Bangladesh's recent history. The total estimated death toll currently stands at 98 from Rangamati district, 30 from Chittagong district and 7 from Bandarban district. Many others are injured and in need of medical assistance.
Renewed mudslides in south-eastern Bangladesh have claimed additional lives and further damage to homes and infrastructure. Collapsing hillsides and heavy flooding are now estimated to have killed over 150 people across five districts.
As of 16 June, floods and landslides in the Chittagong Hill Tract region and surrounding areas have killed 156 people. According to UNICEF, 30 to 40 per cent of water points in the affected areas are flooded. In consultation with the Government, UNICEF stands ready to deploy pre-positioned emergency supplies for water, sanitation and hygiene, child protection, education and nutrition. UNDP has mobilized an emergency early recovery team to support the response and develop a longer-term rehabilitation plan.
The June landslides were the worst landslide-related disaster in Bangladesh since 2007. Beginning 13 June, the landslides resulted in the deaths of 160 people, injured 187 people, and destroyed 6,000 homes, despite being localized in impact. It affected about 80,000 people across five districts: Bandarban, Chittagong, Cox's Bazar, Khagrachari and, Rangamati.
While search and rescue interventions are ending, medical services are providing life-saving assistance. Central and local authorities are restoring road networks, power supply, and communication networks. Prices for basic commodities like fuel and water soared in the market due to the scarcity of goods. The power shortages hindered access to water. Access to health, nutrition assistance, and life-saving intervention was initially limited due to road damage. Protection-related concerns have also increased, particularly for children and women.
Nevertheless, the PM laid emphasis on integrated efforts of all to attain the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030 of the United Nations and asked the Agriculture Ministry to remove hunger, ensure food security, develop nutrition and create a sustainable agriculture system.
It is expected that from the next time, the aftermath of landslides or flood will be effectively handled.  

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Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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