Issue :   
October 2018 Edition of Power Politics is updated.         October 2018 Edition of Power Politics is updated.
Issue:October' 2018


Reaching out to the flood-hit

Humra Quraishi

Kashmir flood of 2014 Where are we heading to! Towards a very dismal future. Where the basic survival issues are not getting rectified, nor addressed. Lies and more lies are mouthed by the establishment, even as we are drowning…getting washed away, ruined in every sense of the term. Today only few amongst us are being left alive enough, to be able to swim or float against the tide, to stay intact whilst swimming in turbulent waters.
If the government was actually and genuinely bothered about development and in keeping the citizens safe and sound, it should be looking at the flood issue somewhat seriously. More than six States of the country are witnessing flood fury of the worst kind. Yet all that we get to hear is of doles from the Centre. What about long term strategies to control flooding and the disastrous offshoots they drag along? What about making public the disaster –control format the government plans to introduce to contain the flood fury? What about the relief packages? Do they actually and genuinely reach the drowning and the nearsubmerged! I’m writing this in the backdrop of the Kashmir floods of 2014, where the much publicized government packages did not reach a large number of the flood affected in the Kashmir Valley . Even after two years of that flood havoc, the Kashmir Traders & Manufacturers Federation( KTMF) had stated the State and Centre’s failure to rehabilitate those ruined in those floods. In fact, individuals who did receive some little compensation- amount from the government had told me that they’d almost simultaneously received electricity bills running into thousands. This when their homes were washed away in the flood fury!

Kerala flood of 2018 And what’s all this talk about the Government of India not taking aid from UAE or, for that matter, from any other country for the flood affected in Kerala? Why not! Not to be overlooked the three basics: Thousands of workers and professionals from Kerala work and reside in the Gulf countries. Also, there is a strong historical connect between Kerala and the Gulf, from bygone centuries, when traders from those lands came to the coastal belts of Kerala for trading in spices.
Above all, the rulers of UAE are themselves offering to assist us and its not that we went asking for help. After all, it’s one of those crisis times for Kerala and mere food packets and clothing wouldn’t do . Entire lives and livelihoods have to be re-built .
If the Government of India doesn’t have enough financial resources to reach out, let others do! Why halt foreign aid and rescue operations in this hour of emergency. Yes, its one of those ongoing emergencies. Ask those who have lost everything to the flood fury.
Doesn’t the Government of India assist other countries in their hour of distress ? So why not accept help from other lands in our hour of distress ? In fact, I must offload details to the anger and hurt I had witnessed amongst the locals in the Kashmir Valley when the Government of India had declined to accept foreign offers of assistance even from the United Nations during the 2014 floods in Kashmir….In fact, the Government of India did not permit any of the internationally trained relief and rescue workers and volunteers to reach there.
Nobody was allowed to be flown in there, from any of the foreign countries, to help in the relief and rescue operations.

Fury taking toll !

Yogi Adityanath As news reports come in from the State of Uttar Pradesh where flood fury is taking its toll, one is not too sure whether the Government of India will allow foreign experts and workers to land there to help in rescue and relief operations. After all, ground realities in Uttar Pradesh are frightfully dangerous. There is lawlessness to such an extent that anyone can be lynched or raped or beaten to death in broad daylight. Not to overlook blatant killings by the State in encounters! May be the

Narendra Modi Government of India led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, or even the Yogi government of Uttar Pradesh, would not want any of the foreign workers, flood experts to see the prevailing realities in that State. In fact, I am not too certain whether relief- rescue workers and volunteers from foreign lands would even want to land in Uttar Pradesh! Only to be killed, in one way or the other! Anyway , one has to take solace from the fact that nothing is permanent.

Leaving you, with these lines od Gulzar saab ‘ Kuchh bhi qayam nahin hai kuchh bhi nahin /Raat-din gir rahe hain chausar par/ Aundhi –seedhi -sikaudiyon ki tarah/ Mah-o- saal haath lagte hain/ Ungliyon se phisal terahte hain / Kuchh bhi qayam nahin hai kuchh bhi nahin / Aur jo qayam hai ek bus main hoon/ Main jo har pal badalta rahta hoon.’ ( ‘ Nothing is permanent, nothing at all / Days and nights fall on the chausar board / Like kauri shells, some face up others down / The months and years dealt out to you / Slip through your fingers / Nothing is permanent, nothing at all / And what is permanent is me / I , who is changing at every instant.’)