85 more families need urgent help

Following the fire in two villages on 5 and 6 April 2013 in Murshidabad (West Bengal) as reported in the previous issue on this page, we at Charity Alliance were only able to distribute tin corrugated sheets to 40 families out of the 214 families fire affected villages. There are a minimum of 85 more families which need urgent help.

Since the appeal we have raised Rs 1,63,500 for this cause.  We have spent Rs 2,00,000 for the sheets already procured. We need to raise Rs 4,25,000 more for the 85 families.

Please contribute. Click here for details.
Photo: Distribution of Corrugated sheets on 22 April 2013
Report as published in 16-30 April 2013 issue:

Two Murshidabad villages gutted, 214 families homeless, need your urgent help

Murshidabad: Two entire villages in Murshidabad (West Bengal) have been gutted by fire and 981 members of 214 families, all Muslims, living in the two villages have been rendered homeless. All their belongings, including 55 animals like cows and goats, have been burnt by the fire on 5 and 6 April 2013. The affected villages are Jhaudia and Hukahar near Jalangi town in Murshidabad district.

A mysterious fire erupted in village Jhaudia on 5 April gutting all 54 houses in the village and killing 55 domestic animals. Two grocery shops too were turned into ashes. Food grains, clothes and furniture as well as cash and other materials were burnt into ashes. A total of 181 men of the village Jhaudia have become shelterless as a result.

The nearby village Hukahar too witnessed a similar fire the next day. As furious as the previous one, it affected 800 men, women and children of 160 families in the village. Their homes were gutted alongwith all belongings, 113 domestic animals and seven shops. Like the other village, here too everything was gutted while people could save themselves by running away into the fields.

Charity Alliance team headed by its local representative Mr Golam Kibriya, visited the two villages and found the helpless villagers sleeping under open sky with almost nothing left. Even their clothes, grains and groceries have been burnt by the fire. A few small shops operating in the two villages too have been burnt. They need emergency help to be able to bring a semblance of normalcy back into their shattered lives.

Local authorities are providing cooked food to the victims but there is yet to be any announcement to compensation to rebuild their houses. According to Mr Kibriya each family urgently needs corrugated sheets to build a simple shelter. Each family would need financial support of Rs 5000 for this. To help 214 families, a sum of Rs 10,70,000 needs to raised.

Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan, Chairman of Charity Alliance, has appealed to all to come forward to help these hapless people in their hour of need. Help may be sent through local charities known to you or through Charity Alliance which is active in the area since 2005 and runs Alliance School and a vocational training centre in the adjacent village, Uttar Ghoshpara. (For our contact details and how to contribute, please click here).    

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 May 2013 on page no. 24

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