Nepal PM faces fury of earthquake victims
Kathmandu: Protests on Wednesday greeted Nepalese Prime Minister Sushil Koirala in relief camps as anger spilled over to the streets with people seizing food and water supplies, four days after a devastating quake claimed over 6,000 lives.
People vented their anger when the PM visited their camps to assess relief work and complained that they were not getting any aid. Koirala told them that he had come to see for himself the difficult situation Nepal is faced with and assured them that help would reach them at the earliest. Thousands of desperate Nepalese, who have been staying in the open with no houses to return to and fearing more devastation from aftershocks, clashed with police and seized water-bottles and other essential supplies.
Frayed tempers were also witnessed at the main bus station where quake victims had gathered to get out of Kathmandu but the promised buses failed to arrive. Scuffles broke out between angry crowds and the riot police which arrived there to control the situation.
Over 6,000 bodies have so far been pulled out from under mounds of debris and rubble left by razed homes and buildings in Saturday's 7.9-magnitude temblor, deputy PM Bam Dev Gautam said. On Tuesday, Koirala had said the toll could reach 10,000 because information from the affected remote villages is yet to come.
More than 11,000 people have been injured in the quake, the worst in over 80 years. Rescuers are still struggling to reach remote mountainous areas in the Himalayan nation, where relief efforts have been hampered by heavy rain and landslide even as global help poured in.
Officials warned that they faced problems in getting aid into the country and then delivering it to the remote communities in desperate need.
Nepal has declared three days of mourning for the victims of Saturday's earthquake.