Rain adds to miseries of cyclone-hit people in Odisha

Berhampur: Woes of people in the cyclone-hit Odisha's Ganjam district were compounded today with disruption of relief and restoration activities due to the incessant rain across the district since last two days.
The victims whose houses collapsed in the cyclone Phailin, faced much difficult in the rains, while at least three more houses collapsed in Berhampur town due to fresh rainfall on Tuesday night. The worst sufferers were the slum dwellers and the people living in low-lying areas in the town.
Gajapati Nagar, Gobinda Nagara, Basudev Nagara, Neelanchala Nagara were inundated today with the rain and drain water, officials said.
?The rain played as spoilsport while we are trying to rebuilt the damage house?, said Kora Majhi, one of the slum dwellers in Berhampur. He along with five members of his family members was spending sleepless nights inside a hut.
?We have no roof over the heads. We receive the polythene-sheet on only Monday?, said Puspa Sahu of Gate Bazar area.
Around 2.38 lakh houses were damaged fully or partially in the cyclone Phailin, sources said.
The cyclone victims are in grip of panic with the IMD predicting more rains in the district in the next few days under the influence of a well-marked low-pressure.
The district has received in an average 81.51 mm rainfall in the last 24-hours ended on 8.30 am today with highest rain recorded in Rangeilunda block with 172 mm followed by 145 mm in Khallikote, 127 mm in Ganjam, 114 mm in Chikit, sources said.
"We have already issued instructions to the tehsildars to shift the families to the nearby school buildings or any safe places whose house collapsed or in dilapidated condition.
Since we have already provided rice to them, they can start community kitchen in the shelter camp? said assistant collector (emergency) Mahendra Panda.
The relief operation in the district was slowed down due to the incessant rain, he said.
Almost all the affected families to get the relief in the next couple of days, he said adding that each of the cyclone affected families in the district are being provided with 50-kg rice, Rs 500 for dal and four litre kerosene as the relief components.
Former deputy speaker and senior BJP leader Ram Chandra Panda who visited some inundated areas, demanded sufficient kerosene and polythene to the slum dwellers of the town. Panda also demanded immediate restoration of power supply and waive the electricity charge to all domestic consumers for at least one month.