Sunday, August 19, 2018

'Out-of-the-way behaviour' even in these times.

Most of us cannot exhibit good behaviour all the time. But being in one's best behaviour during trying times and during emergencies would go a long way in resolving crises or bottlenecks that are bound to crop up. During the ongoing times of catastrophe in Kerala, there were quite a few such occasions. I shall go through a few of them.

 (a) Refusal to Provide Storage Space for Relief Material.

       The Bar Association's hall at the Collectorate, in Thrissur, was sought for stowing relief material
       by the Collector which was refused. A lame excuse of the key having been misplaced was
       floated but the firebrand young Collector, TV Anupama IAS wouldn't hear any of it and had the
       lock broken open under her powers - during extraordinary conditions. The place is now stacked
       up with 1,000 kg of rice in bags.

       The lawyers, caught off guard, now claim that they had never refused and it was the misplaced
       key that was the sole reason!

 (b) Refusal to Provide House Boats.

       Many house boat owners in Alappuzha had refused the use of their boats for rescue purposes
       when flooding had taken place. Perhaps, their hesitation was because the boats, pressed for such
       uses, would require an overhaul, post activity. What they didn't understand or cater for, in their
       narrow mindedness, was the tremendous suffering of the people around them. They were only
       thinking in terms of making money through their well heeled customers and foreign tourists.

       What they don't realise is that if the local populace is not prosperous enough and supportive to
       their supportive requirements, their business can never be successful!

 (c) Joyride Costs Time, Fuel.

       The commandos on board the IAF chopper on a rescue mission to Arattupuzha in Chengannur
       were shocked that the 28 year old Joby, they'd winched up, wanted a joy ride and to be left back.
       Even though a woman and child were stranded nearby, the rescue team had decided to pick him
       up as the aircraft was low on fuel.

       The officer-in-charge could not hide his desperation at having left the needy!

 (d) Hoarders Make a Fast Buck.

       By afternoon when the water had receded in many parts, unscrupulous wholesale merchants/
       vendors tried to make a quick buck by exploiting the hapless people. Please taste the prices:-

               (i) Tomatoes @ Rs.120/- per kg.
              (ii) Beans @ Rs.100/- per kg.
             (iii) Okra @ Rs.120/- per kg.
             (iv) Potatoes @ Rs.60/- per kg.

        A few of these guys were rounded up by the police. But I feel that they should be given
        exemplary punishment to avoid a repeat!

 (e) The Refusal to Embark.

       Many people, stranded within the confines of their flooded houses, refused to board the rescue
       boats because they didn't want to leave, the difficulty with which the rescue team had made it to
       them, notwithstanding! There were others who were scared to be winched up into the choppers.

       They wanted to have their food packets sent across to them, instead!

 (f) The Sad Plight of the Domestic Animals.

      Except for a few dogs, cattle and other domestic animals had to bear the brunt of hunger and
      lack of drinking water. Naturally, many of the fleeing people wouldn't have had the presence of
      mind to cater for their safety/well being.

      The silent animals had gone through harrowing times without having anyone to share their
      agony with!


1. With the sunny weather returning and flood waters receding, the people affected by the flood have slowly started to recoup and find their way back from the relief camps. There are many who have nowhere to go because their houses have been washed away/are not inhabitable without a reconstruction or refurbishing. Their nightmare will continue for a long, long time.

2. The yeoman service rendered by the fisher folk, fresh from their recent 'Ockhi' nightmare, along with their boats - both big and small - is indeed commendable.            

No comments:

Post a Comment