Thursday, December 30, 2004

The Urban-Rural Divide

The ever extant ,urban-rural divide, seems to have seeped in providing relief for tsunami victims too.
For, the folks in the urban areas are better placed in terms of access to relief materials that there were even reports of they exercising choices about what to eat and what not. Its not that they don't have a right to choose the food of their choice; but certainly not when they themselves are homeless and are wholly dependent of such good works of a few voluntary groups.
The quote of a local fisherman in one of the dailies was quite irritating. He said: "I am fed up of eating puliyodarai and pongal and so I opted for puris instead. Though I'd like to have some meen kozhambu, I know that these relief people will not give non-veg." Isn't it ironical that jus about three days ago, he had lost all his belongings and was right now sheltered in a corporation school and yet such comment.
Whereas the same tsunami victims in an interior hamlet of Kalpakkam, far away from the attention of the media, were desperate to get something to eat as their children had not been fed anything for the last two days. This was reported by a friend of mine who happen to visit the area to give away some clothes. The whole village is plunged in darkness literally as the transformer had been washed off by the wave. The corporation and municipality staff light up the path till the point where the ministers come and just leave these folks, who are a little interior, in darkness.
Will the Government machinery, in its right earnest, provide enough relief to all those in the interior villages too? Or at least will the good samaritans, who had immediately taken up the task of offering a helping hand, be ready to stretch themselves a little further to all these interior hamlets?

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