Uttarakhand Flood Disaster is a shame on India

We must learn from Sri Rama how to live in style and from Sri Krishna both to live and to die in style. In the concluding chapters of Book 11, Sri Krishna warns that after his return to heavenly abode soon, the entire city of Dwaraka will be gobbled up by the turbulent Ocean, and asks that all people be evacuated to safety, immediately. It is only after ensuring that all measures for protection of the people are taken does he depart. Our own modern-day Governments in India will not let the people either live or die in style. This is what we have seen during past disasters and again, in the Himalayan states, this week.

The Met. departments had warned about heavy rains, the CAG had warned about gross inadequacy of personnel and equipment to ensure safety during flash floods, yet it has been business as usual for the country. Eye witnesses appearing on the visual media say that thousands are dead in the hills, and many many more are stranded in the forests and high altitudes, with neither food nor living facilities. And, no contact has been possible with the missing ones. One eye-witness says, he saw hundreds of persons being washed away in the floods, I could myself see several motor vehicles of all categories carried away by the floods and, one of the flashy cars had a driver seated inside and holding the wheel !

What kind of impression do these scenes, which even school children see on the TV, leave on the minds of people. An utter sense of despondency, loss of all hope of a dignified life, loss of faith in Governments and Ministers? Perhaps, all this together. And, as usual, our politicians, the Ministers indulge in the run-of-the-mill blame-game, not willing to take blame or share responsibility for the lives of thousands of our poor and honest people. The day of reckoning is coming, and this event is too recent to be forgotten,

It is shameful that even our traditionally efficient Army is unable to perform adequately, thanks to the poor equipment provisions and a near absence of infra-structure. The CAG had warned the Government even on this account. The Chief Ministers of the affected states have no answers to media questions, and shoot off invectives.



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