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Lack of cleanliness affects relief camps

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Heena Kausar

Updated: Jun 24, 2013, 02:10 PM IST

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As Delhi grapples with exigencies post flood, people living in temporary shelters around Yamuna complain that the government is not doing enough to provide them relief and support. “The condition we are living in are pathetic, but we have no option. There is so much garbage lying around our tents. The Corporation’s van comes to pick up the garbage once in a day but still so much of it is left here,” said Jannatun who used to live in a hut around the Yamuna bank near Old Bridge in Shastri Park.

Around 34 tents, in which as many as 280 people are living, have been erected on the road that are closed to vehicular movement for four days. The old bridge is also closed and movement of vehicles is not allowed on it. Food and water are being supplied to the victims every day, but people said they are scared of falling sick due to unclean surroundings. “A medical van comes to give us basic medicines for fever and other small ailments. But we are scared that we might fall sick due to some serious disease because there is no cleanliness,” said Shanti Devi. She lives in a cramped tent with four other members of her family.

They used to farm in the land near Yamuna bank. “Our savings have been washed away. We are left with very few belongings. It will take us years to start afresh,” said Devi. Many cows and buffaloes that were earlier kept at a cowshed near the bridge have now been kept near the tents in the same area. People complain that a lot of garbage and faeces are being collected in the area due the animals. “Already there is so much of garbage here and these animals are giving us more trouble.

They have been kept so close to our tents that we can’t escape the foul smell and faeces,” said Phoolmati, a resident of the camp. However, in some areas people living in the tents are not facing many problems. Around 250 people living in tents around the ITO bridge are being provided with water, food and proper medical assistance. “We are getting food and water regularly. There is a medical van standing here all the time and we can get medicines from there,” said Bhagvan Singh, a farmer.

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