RELIEF agencies of all denominations and nationalities are pouring in aid to cyclone-devastated East Pakistan, where half a million people are feared to have lost their lives. At the time of going to press the official known death toll had risen to 55,000.
Caritas, the international Relief Agency of the Catholic Church, has sent in aid to the stricken area. It has already granted over £4.000 in aid. The Catholic Women's League Relief and Refugee Committee, one of the official representatives of Caritas in Britain, has opened a special distress fund and has already earmarked E 1,01X) for immediate relief work.
After a meeting in London on Monday the Disasters Relief Committee consisting of Oxfam, War on Want, Christian Aid, Red Cross and Save the Children Fund, decided that each charity would send £4,000, making a total of £20,000 for the immediate purchase of supplies in Singapore.
EVERY EFFORT According to official statements, a sum equal to about £19m. is available for the relief of about two million people the area affected is one of the most densely populated in the world. In Dacca the Relief Commissioner told reporters that damage was "so far" estimated to he in the region of £31m.
Paddy fields have been ruined by salt water, and nearly all cattle in the area have been drowned, their bodies floating in the channels. Anti-cholera vaccine was being rushed there as we went to press, but conditions were preventing relief ships landing their cargoes.
Thousands of wells will have to be sunk by engineers to provide drinking water for the stricken population, and this task has already been started.
It will be some time before the exact situation in outlying districts is known, but reports describing the devastation are coming in continually.
Pakistanis all over London have started a fund-raising drive to help the victims.