Kathmandu, June 17

The opposition alliance of five political parties today alleged that the huge loss of lives and property caused by floods and landslides throughout the county had exposed the irresponsibility and apathy of the government led by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oil with regard to timely disaster preparedness.

Issuing a joint press release today, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba, NCP-MC Chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal, NCP-UML senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal, Janata Samajbadi Party-Nepal Chairperson Upendra Yadav and Rastriya Janamorcha Vice-chairperson Durga Paudel said there was no preparedness to cope with rain-induced disasters despite having various laws in force.

"Early monsoon rain resulted in such a huge loss of lives and property in many parts of the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic. This has made people living under constant fear of coronavirus panic more," the release stated. The opposition leaders demanded that the government carry out search, rescue and relief operations in an effective, honest and transparent manner. Opposition leaders also highlighted the need to relocate people residing in vulnerable areas to safer places in a bid to avert further loss or damage. "We demand that the government ensure food, clothing and shelter to the disaster victims, in addition to relief package to the kin of the deceased, missing and injured."

Sindhupalchowk, Manang, Mustang, Lamjung, Bajura, Pyuthan, Arghakhanchi, Doti, Syangja, Kaski and Gorkha are among the districts worst hit by the foods, landslides and inundation.

They have also directed their respective party cadres to actively engage in the search and resource operation. According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, at least six persons were killed, 11 injured and 27 went missing throughout the country due to rain-induced disasters over the past two days. Similarly, 89 houses were completely destroyed and 26 others damaged.

The Meteorological Forecasting Division has alerted people against potential disasters for the next few days and predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall in all the provinces.

A version of this article appears in the print on June 18, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.