The flood-ravaged Yatnal village in Jewargi taluk of Gulbarga district has at last caught the attention of the officialdom, and a gruel centre-cum-temporary relief centre is being established in the village for people who had lost their houses partially or fully in the heavy rains and floods.

A report appearing in these columns on Sunday caused ripples in the official circles with the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) taking exception to the delay in extending assistance to the affected people and a senior official of the CMO pulled up senior officials in the district for their failure in reaching out to the people in distress.

Things started moving after the call from the CMO’s office on Sunday and an official team led by Chief Executive Officer V. Anbukumar, Assistant Commissioner Sangappa and others visited the village and distributed compensation amount to the victims whose houses had collapsed or were damaged. Even before the team could reach the village, arrangements were completed to start the gruel centre and the temporary relief camp.

Mr. Anbukumar distributed cheques to 86 families who had lost their houses fully or partially in Yatnal. The village had remained cut off from the outside world for four days from October 2 following floods in the Yatnal stream, a tributary of river Bhima which surrounded the village and entered the houses in low-lying areas and damaged standing crops on hundreds of hectares of land.

Those who had lost their houses had taken refuge in the Hanuman temple and a few whose houses were damaged partially continued to live in the damaged houses despite the risk of the remaining portion of the house collapsing on them. One of the major complaints of the villagers was that from the day one when the village was marooned, not a single senior official visited them or extended any help.

However, the relief package consisting of foodgrains including 20 kg of rice, 5 kg wheat, 1 kg each of sugar and tur dal, being distributed to other flood-hit areas, was not distributed in Yatnal on Sunday. “We will distribute the relief package of foodgrains in a couple of days to the affected people in Yatnal,” Mr. Anbukumar said.

The authorities, however, have started distributing foodgrains in other affected villages and the official sources claimed that so far 2,791 families in the district have been provided foodgrains. Mr. Anbukumar distributed the relief package and the compensation amount to the affected families in Ganwar, Jewargi (K), Jewargi (B) and Janata Colony in Jewargi taluk on Sunday.