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Rebuilding PoK to take several years: Aziz

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October 17, 2005 19:00 IST

Terming as a 'monumental task' the rebuilding of quake-ravaged areas of Pakistan, Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz on Monday said the entire reconstruction and rehabilitation process will take about ten years costing over USD five billion.

Rebuilding the impacted areas would involve restoration of damaged infrastructure, rebuilding of schools, a large number of hospitals as well as relocation and resettlement of hundreds of thousands of homeless people, Aziz told a special session of PoK legislators.

The entire recovery and rehabilitation operation could take five to ten years requiring five billion dollars, he was quoted as saying by the NNI news agency. Over 40,000 people have so far been reported killed and many remain missing and the exact number of victims will probably never be known, Aziz said. "With the assistance of our people and international community, the government will be able to help the victims and recover their sufferings by rebuilding their homes and their lives," Aziz said.

The prime minister said the government has chalked out a comprehensive plan to involve all agencies in the relief, recovery and reconstruction process in affected areas.

He said a coordinated system would be required in the reconstruction and rehabilitation process after moving from relief and the earthquake rehabilitation authority has been set up to coordinate these efforts.

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