Manipur quake victims warn of returning ‘pittance’ of relief

Imphal, April 29 (IANS) Alleging malpractices and corruption in giving relief, some victims of January 4 earthquake in Manipur have threatened to return to the state government what they called the “pittance” given to them as compensation.

Haobijam Kulachandra of Yumnam Khunnou village in Imphal East district said: “Eight houses were destroyed in my locality by the earthquake. I was paid Rs.5,200 while one was paid Rs.3,200. Later, I learned that some others got much higher amounts.”

Officials, however, said they needed more details to comment on the people’s complaints but the compensation amount “must have been fixed” on the basis of the extent of damages of the houses.

Kulachandra said: “The officials did not show us the figures. I had to sign at the corner of the sheet without knowing the figures.”

Chief secretary Oinam Nabakishore is understood have talked with the relief commissioner on the allegation.

Officials told IANS that full and comprehensive reports are yet to be prepared, and added that there were devastating thunderstorm and hailstorm in Churachandpur district on Thursday night, which have apparently hampered the quake damage assessment.

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