Colombo: Floods and landslide have affected a large number of people in Sri Lanka and approximately 17,976 families have been evacuated to 265 welfare centres in nine districts, the DMC said. The National Disaster Relief Service Centre (NDRSC) has provided Rs 44.15 million to meet the immediate needs of the affected populations.
The sluice gates of Deduru-oya, Kukuleganga and Rajanganaya tanks were still open and in a few areas of Ja-Ela, inundation continued. Sand bags have been stacked by the Army and Navy together with the communities to stop flood water penetration to settlements. The Gampaha-Ganemulla road is still submerged and transportation is limited in the Kirindiwita, Akarawita areas. Low-lying areas are still under water in Wattala in the Gampaha District. A Hindu Kovil has been heavily damaged due to fallen tree in the Norwood estate in Nuwara Eliya. The DMC is presently coordinating with military agencies through its Emergency Operation Centre for better response interventions and the NDRSC is undertaking needs assessment at local levels, especially in safety centres.
The NDRSC has allocated Rs 44.15 million funds to the most affected districts to assist the severely affected populations. Agencies that are providing humanitarian assistance were directed to the North-Western areas and also some agencies are supporting communities in affected areas of Kalutara, Ratnapura, Gampaha and Puttalam.
Deputy Director of the DMC Pradeep Kodippili said that about 5,000 people have returned to their homes. Military spokesperson Brigadier Sumith Atapattu added that the Army along with the Navy is involved in rehabilitation works to facilitate the victims to return to their homes. “We have just commenced the rehabilitation work in the aftermath of the disasters. The troops that were deployed on ground are presently helping the people to return to their homes at the request of the DMC and the Grama Niladharis of the respective areas,” he said.
Commenting on the aftermath of the disasters, Acting Director General of Health Services Dr. Sarath Amunugama said that there have been no increases epidemics such as typhoid, diarrhoea, and dysentery in the disaster-affected areas. “In times like these, we monitor these diseases and generate a report every day. So far, there have not been any reported increases in bowel diseases such as typhoid, diarrhoea, dysentery or food poisoning in the 50 or so camps that house the flood-affected people.”
Meanwhile, Police security has been intensified in areas where people have abandoned their properties to escape the floods and landslides in order to prevent looting and asked people to report any such incident as soon as it takes place.