LAHORE - The 14-member committee, constituted by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif under Law Minister Rana Sanaullah to assess flood damage in Bahawalpur and Dera Ghazi Khan Divisions, met on Saturday.

The committee will submit its recommendations to the chief minister within a week after which the affected areas will be declared calamity-hit areas. During its first meeting, the committee members were briefed about a comprehensive survey to be carried out in flood-hit areas to get information about the damage.

The committee will formulate separate reports on the loss in urban and rural areas with the help of local administrations so that these localities could be declared calamity-hit. The body was told that free seed would be provided to farmers having up to 12.5-acre land.

The committee was informed that the federal government would be approached to immediately complete the project of Kachi Canal at Dera Ghazi Khan because the project contractors had created hurdles in the flow of water in the canal by constructing small dams, which caused flood.

The committee was also informed about the relief activities. A total of 63,770 ration packs, 35,000 rice bags of 20-kg each, 37,000 flour bags, 7,000 tents and 45,000 mineral water bottles have been distributed among the flood-affected people while mobile dispensaries of the Health Department have been providing medical facilities to the affected people and the medicines are available in abundance, the body heard.

The members were told that the Livestock Department had set up 32 camps where 132 officials had been performing their duties for provision of medicines and vaccination of cattle. Earlier, the meeting decided that Rs300 million should be provided immediately to the Irrigation Department so that the spurs and dykes of canals could be repaired.