Still no aid for Odisha tribal families hit by Cyclone Hudhud

Koraput, Nov 7 : Almost a month after cyclone Hudhud hit Odisha, seven tribal families of remote Podaguda village, 100 km from here in Koraput district, claim they are yet to get aid to reconstruct their houses.

After gusty wind ripped through their houses on October 12, these tribal families have taken shelter on the verandah of fellow villagers.

"While roof of my house was blown away in the strong wind, walls collapsed in the incessant rain. I lost 60 kg of ragi, 80 kg of paddy and other household articles in the cyclone," said 40-year-old Kuda Hantal.

According to state's relief code, Kuda is entitled to Rs 17,600 as her house has been completely damaged, said a revenue department official.

One has to trek a few miles on hilly terrain to reach the village, which houses 32 Kondh families, bordering Andhra Pradesh. The source of livelihood of the tribal families is minor cultivation on hill slopes and collecting minor forest produce.

"On October 13, we received 5 kg of rice each as the only relief material from the administration. I lost my house in the cyclone and am trying to build a small hut with mud and branches of tree as I don't have enough money to repair my house," said Sana Pangi, 50.

Officials said a total of 10,081 houses were damaged across the district in the cyclone and the district administration received Rs 2.99 crore towards house damage assistance on October 30.

District Emergency Officer (Koraput) Rameswar Pradhan said. "We have given the relief fund to tehsildars concerned and subsequently the money will be distributed among people, whose houses were damaged".

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