WFP, IDB generously helped rehabilitate quake victims: AJK president



MUZAFFARABAD, OCT 9 – The AJK President Sardar Masood Khan while lauding the efforts of World Food Program (WFP) for the food security on the international level, has said that since 1972, the WFP in collaboration with the state government has been offering appreciable services in the food supply and other sectors.

Talking to a delegation which called on him under the leadership of the WFP Country Director Chris Kaye here on Friday, he said that the WFP had generously contributed to the relief and rehabilitation of the affected people of the devastating earthquake of 2005, flash flood of 2010, and torrential downpour and avalanche in Neelum valley last year.

Expressing gratitude for completing Emergency Storage Facility in Muzaffarabad and handing it over to the SDMA on the 15th anniversary of 2005-earthquake, the state president hoped that in future too, the WFP in collaboration with the state government would extend prompt relief to the affected people of natural calamities, climate change, epidemics and diseases in Azad Kashmir, and besides taking measures for preparation and response to disasters and under-nutrition children.

Sardar Masood Khan expressed the pleasure that even 15 years after the 2005-earthquake, the international community and the agencies were extending assistance, and because of the support of these agencies, we would be able to better respond to any natural calamity in future with full preparations.

Apprising the delegation of the situation erupted out of the Indian Army firing on the civilian population along the Line of Control, the AJK president said that more than half a million members were faced with serious hardships because of the Indian Army firing, and sometimes the government was facing difficulty in providing food, safe residence and life-saving drugs. Similarly, several civilians sustain injuries or disability when the landmines go off at the Line of Control, and their rehabilitation providing wheelchairs and other surgical equipment to them is a big challenge for the state government.

Addressing country the representative of the Islamic Development Bank Inamullah, the AJK president thanked the IDB and the OIC for helping in the reconstruction of 315 quake-hit educational institutions in the liberated territory.

Inamullah Khan assured that the IDB will consider cooperating in the promotion of agriculture particularly horticulture and floriculture for the economic uplift of the liberated territory. The IDB will also launch a project for the education of 40,000 dropout children in Azad Kashmir.

WFP Officer Jennifer Kaye, AJK Additional Chief Secretary (development) Syed Asif Hussain Shah, Secretary State Disaster Management Authority Shahid Mohiyuddin Qadri and other seniors officials were also present during the meeting.