IMPHAL, April 26 (IANS): People affected by torrential rains in Manipur in the last 10 days are sore over the alleged sloth in official response to their plight as the government awaits district collectors' reports before disbursing relief.
The state cabinet at an emergency meeting on Monday evening decided the relief would be given as soon as comprehensive reports are received from the district collectors. Chief Secretary Oinam Nabakishore confirmed this.
Official sources said most collectors have collated reports on the extent of damages in their districts.
Meanwhile, traffic on the Imphal-Jiribam National Highway-37 was disrupted after multiple landslides in Tamenglong district. Hundreds of buses, trucks and private vehicles were stranded and causing hardships to travellers.
The Border Roads Organisations' workers were trying to clear the debris amid fears of more landslides.
Officials said they feared that traffic on the National Highway-2, which snakes through Nagaland, may also be affected soon, cutting off supply routes to Manipur.
Already, the prices of consumer items in Manipur have been raised by traders on the pretext that supply of consumables from Assam has been disrupted.
Congress leaders, including Manipur Pradesh Congress president T.N. Haokip, party legislaors, ministers and parliamentary secretaries have since joined in the relief efforts from Monday night.
Congress lawmakers Y. Surchandra and K. Ranjit supervised the distribution of relief material in Thoubal district, and Minister K. Ratan and parliamentary secretary Amin Shah in Mayang Imphal areas.
Ranjit said: "We have brought rice, edible oil and salt for the affected people. Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh has directed for all possible help to the affected. Several houses have been damaged by rains and hailstorms in Manipur."
Opposition parties say the Congress is extending a helping hand to the people with an eye to the coming elections to the Imphal Municipal Corporation and the assembly.