Relief dropping injures 12 people in Orissa

Kendrapara: Each time relief laden copters fly past the skyline of flooded villages in Kendrapara district of Orissa, people battling against hunger heave a sigh of relief but there are others who look skywards in trepedition as the airdrop often misses its target causing damage to houses and injuring people.

About twelve people were injured after being hit by relief bags dropped from the air while several thatched and asbestos houses were damaged while the articles were dropped during the last three days in flood-hit Kendrapara district, District Collector Pradipta Kishore Mohanty said.

An 11-year-old girl Subhasri Behera from Jagadalpur village in Patkura was injured when a relief bag tore apart an asbestos roof which hit her yesterday.

In nearby Jagannathpur village, 50-year-old Rama Chandra Das also sustained injury as the aerial object hit him on the head yesterday.

The nature of injury sustained by the flood victims was however, minor in nature, official sources said.

The roof of a number of thatched and asbestos houses has been partially damaged as the flying bags pierced through the fragile roofs after the air drops missed targets in most places.

Though the articles often get submerged in filthy river waters and becomes unfit for human consumption, they are retrieved by the waiting people. Those materials cater to the needs of the cattle, according to flood affected people.

"Due to continuous rain, air-dropping has been suspended. Once weather improves, dropping of relief material may resume if the situation so warrants", said Mohanty.