Balochistan’s caretaker Chief Minister, Mir Ali Mardan Khan Domki, revealed during the Federal Steering Committee (FSC) meeting that the promised Rs10 billion relief package for flood-affected people in the province is still pending, raising serious concerns about an effective response to the aftermath of the devastating floods.
The delay in releasing the announced grant adds strain to an already challenging situation. Essential infrastructure, including communication systems, health, and education institutions, has been severely impacted. The urgent plea for the immediate release of approved funds emphasises the pressing needs of the affected districts. As disclosed by Mr. Domki, almost every district in Balochistan was affected by the worst flood of 2022, resulting in widespread destruction of vital infrastructure. Discussions during the FSC meeting focused on the rehabilitation of flood-affected people and the implementation of projects. A proposal to increase compensation for fully and partially affected houses garnered support, with the condition of not reducing the number of victims. However, the delay in the Rs10 billion relief package announced by former Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif adds complexity to the ongoing recovery efforts.
Mr. Domki emphasised the severe impact on communication systems, health, and education institutions, with over 50 bridges being completely or partially collapsed due to heavy rains and devastating floods in the province. Despite the federal government’s commitment to a relief package last year, the funds have not been released, leaving the affected regions grappling with the consequences of delayed assistance.
Furthermore, Mr. Domki urged the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) to ensure the early release of approved funds amounting to Rs 400 million for the rehabilitation of various sectors in the affected districts. The immediate implementation of rehabilitation projects under the World Bank’s support is also crucial for mitigating the challenges faced by Balochistan.
The funding delays highlighted in the FSC meeting underscore the need for swift and efficient government action. The Balochistan government’s plea for urgent funds and support, especially in the aftermath of natural disasters, emphasises the importance of proactive and responsive governance to ensure the well-being of affected communities.