[Dhaka Correspondent] Leaders of left-leaning political parties Friday expressed their dissatisfaction with relief work and coordination in the Sidr-hit districts and urged the government to immediately declare the districts national disaster areas.
Workers Party president, Rashed Khan Menon, returning from an eight-day relief operation in Barisal and Barguna, urged all political parties and organizations to put in concerted efforts to save the cyclone victims. Democratic Left Alliance leaders after a visit to the southern areas expressed their dissatisfaction with aid activities in the affected areas. They also demanded immediate withdrawal of the state of emergency and coordination in the government relief activities.
The combine’s coordinator Khalequzzaman and leaders Tipu Biswas, Saiful Huq, Abdul Mannan Azad, Quamrul Alam Sabuj, Bazlur Rashid Firoz also accompanied the relief team. The alliance leaders demanded continuation of relief activities in affected areas at least for six months, increased supply of drinking water and medicines and construction of more shelters in areas vulnerable to cyclones. The team in two days visited Barguna district headquarters, Bamna and some areas of Patharghata. The combine’s leader Zonayed Saki, who visited Khulna, said it would be impossible to save the victims if proper initiatives were not taken.
Menon criticized the government’s role in the post-cyclone relief activities, saying the government was maintaining double standards. He said the chief adviser had called on all to take part in relief activities, but the police stopped student and cultural fronts of the party from raising funds for the victims, “I have found no coordination in relief activities carried out by various government agencies.” “The political parties should be able to take part in relief activities without any hindrance.”
Workers Party will carry out relief operations in affected areas despite all odds, said party general secretary Bimal Biswas.