MIRPURKHAS Expressing his great pride in countrys armed forces, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said here Sunday that their assistance would be sought wherever and whenever required. During his visit to Umerkot, the prime minister also announced Rs20,000 for each flood-affected family, and while his stay at Hyderabad on late Saturday night he directed the finance minister to immediately release Rs1.53 billion for the flood victims. After his visit to flood-ravaged areas of Mirpur Khas, Gilani told the media that he had directed army helicopters to airlift the trapped flood affectees to safer zones. While asserting that government was using all available resources to provide relief to flood affected people, he claimed that rescue operations in all the flooded areas had been completed and now they were concentrating on relief activities to alleviate the miseries of the rain-hit people. The prime minister appealed to global community to assist in flood relief activities, while he also urged all representatives to work in their respective areas. He said he has already asked the federal and provincial ministers, senators and other representatives to supervise relief work in their respective areas and ensure transparency. Gilani claimed that widespread devastation occurred in Sindh following 'unexpected heavy rainfall. Oxfam and other national and international agencies had warned Pakistan government of large-scale devastation in monsoon season, urging it to take preemptive measures, but the calls fell on deaf ears. Talking to newsmen at a relief camp of Kathri near Sindhri in Mirpurkhas, PM Gilani said that the government has sped up the relief work being carried out by national and provincial disaster management authorities with the assistance of army. Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, federal ministers Naved Qamar and Raja Pervez Ashraf, provincial police chief Wajid Durrani, Sindh chief secretary, local PPP office bearers and officers of district administration were present on the occasion. The prime minister directed the district administration to work on grassroots level for the assistance of flood affected people and also asked the officers concerned to ensure veterinary facilities to the affected areas. Earlier, the prime minister distributed relief items and cash amounts among some of the flood victims in Kathri high school relief camp, while he has also examined the free medical camp setup there by Pakistan Air Force. But as soon as the prime minister and other VIPs left, hundreds of people waiting outside the relief camp stormed it and took away the ration bags from revenue employees. This was yet another manifestation of the extreme level of deprivation and starvation among the rain-ravaged people. Increasing number of such ration-snatch incidents has exposed the felicity of tall claims of the administration, whose priority seems to be point scoring rather than meeting the needs of these devastated masses. On this occasion, affected villagers Ali Raza Jarwar, Ahmed Mari, Jan Mohammad Mari, Syed Hashim Shah and others exposed a more shameful act of the district administration. They told the newsmen that district authorities had arranged the 'artificial relief camp at the said school just hours before PMs visit by erecting some facilities, and forcibly evacuating genuine rain-hit people of Kathri from the building and bringing in hundreds of tenants of influential land lords and political personalities. They alleged that before arrival of the PM, heavy police contingents baton-charged the flood victims, including women and children, who wanted to reach the relief camp to apprise him of their grievances. They also alleged that their villages, including Jaindo Mari, had been submerged when cut was made in a drain to save the agriculture lands of ex-taluka Nazim TMA Sindhri. They also said that ration bags, tents and other goods were provided to political persons who distribute these among their supporters. They demanded the Sindh chief minister and other authorities to order for impartial inquiry into the matter and replace the Mirpurkhas DCO, and also ensure transparent distribution of relief items. App adds: Earlier, the prime minister presided over a meeting late Saturday night at the Circuit House in Hyderabad and directed the Finance Ministry to release Rs1.53 billion immediately to meet the urgent requirements of the flood relief operation. The prime minister said this amount is in addition to Rs500 million released earlier. The meeting was attended by Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, members of the Prime Minister Flood Relief Committee Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Makhdoom Shahabuddin, Naveed Qamar, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Chairman Zamurd Khan. Latter, on Sunday during his address to flood victims at the Bani Sar Camp in Umerkot, PM Gilani announced Rs20,000 for each affected family and directed the authorities concerned to take all out measures to provide relief to the people. The prime minister said Tharparker had been declared as disaster-hit area and stressed the need for working day and night to overcome the challenges in the wake of floods including breakout of epidemics. He said compensation would be provided to assist the affected families in reconstruction of their houses. The Prime Minister said natural disasters could not be avoided, but the human efforts could be increased to lessen their after-effects by taking prompt measures. He assured religious minorities that they would be given equal priority in provision of all facilities.