SWAT - Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif yesterday visited Swat to review post-quake relief activities and expressed his satisfaction over the pace of relief and compensation efforts in the quake-affected areas of Swat.

In Gumgot village of tehsil Barikot, the premier was briefed on the damages caused by the calamity and the ongoing relief measures. The PM distributed cheques of compensation amount among the residents of the area affected by the massive tremble last month.

Federal Information and Broadcasting Minister Senator Pervaiz Rashid, KP Governor Sardar Mehtab Abbasi, PM’s Adviser Engineer Amir Muqam and other provincial authorities were present during the ceremony.

The prime minister lauded efforts of all stakeholders, including federal, provincial, district, local and armed forces, responding to the natural calamity which jolted parts of the country.

He said they should thank Almighty Allah for saving the country from a large-scale destruction because the tremors were massive. He further said the process of compensation to the families who lost their loved ones in the earthquake had been completed. “There has been a delay in compensation for those whose houses were destroyed by the calamity because the damage is far more than we had imagined, but this process too will be completed by November 24,” the PM stated.

“The victims whose property was completely destroyed will receive Rs 0.2 million while those whose houses were destroyed partially will be given Rs 0.1 million,” he added. I have visited quake-affected areas myself and will continue to do so to review the compensation process,” the prime minister said.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced the construction of a Chakdara-Kalam Road on the demand of Amir Muqam and residents of Barikot. He told the gathering that the quality of the newly constructed road would match the motorway.

Nawaz Sharif said, “The KP government provided support while we also supplemented them with financial aid. Civilian and army teams reached the affected areas and evaluated losses so that the situation could be tackled in a better way.”

The prime minister praised the district coordination officer for his efforts to distribute cheques till November 17, prior to the set deadline. He said the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) also deserved accolades for distribution of blankets, medicines and potable water among the affected people in rough terrains.

He said the construction of Nawaz Sharif Hospital in Swat had been started when he was a leader of the opposition, directing his adviser, Engineer Ami Muqam, to gear up his efforts for making it fully functional.

The prime minister said the countrymen would no longer face gas shortage, adding the power loadshedding would come to an end by 2018. He urged authorities concerned to complete the relief and compensation work before the arrival of the harsh winter in these areas.

The prime minister lambasted the terrorist attacks in France, saying Pakistan condemned all incidents of terrorism occurring in any part of the world in the strongest words.

He also recalled Swat was also a terrorism-infested area in the past, but with the successful operation, it got rid of this menace, adding the ongoing operation against terrorism was successful.

Amir Muqam also opined the relief efforts should be completed prior to the arrival of harsh weather in these hilly areas. Lauding the prime minister’s efforts for uplift, he referred to construction of a kidney hospital in the area.

Swat District Coordination Officer Mahmood Saleem told the prime minister that 6,058 cheques out of total 11,255 had been distributed among the people whose houses were completely or partially damaged during the quake.

He said a total of 2,873 houses were completely destroyed while 8,382 partially faced the severity of the quake. He added all the affected people would get the compensation amount by November 17.