It makes me feel proud that SERRA has started delivering results through adoption and expansion of e-governance principles and best practices in managing IT. The launching of the web-portal with this reference is really a great achievement to serve this end. I am sure this web-portal will prove a very efficient tool for interaction of SERRA with different departments of Federal and State Government, the people, as well as, different other agencies working in the earthquake affected area of the State and will certainly improve public access to and dissemination of reconstruction related information.
In view of the catastrophic earthquake that has struck parts of AJK, SERRA is mandated to undertake the gigantic task of reconstruction and rehabilitation in the earthquake affected areas of the Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Just to recount the overall devastation in AJK, the earthquake killed 47,321 people, seriously injured 33,136 and displaced 1.8 million people. About 7,000 sq km area was affected, where physical infrastructure, communication network and farmlands were severely damaged. In addition, 314,474 houses, 2578 education institutions and 334 health facilities were destroyed. About 810 km roads & 2,725 meter bridges were damaged and 50-70% of the water supply, sanitation, telecommunication and power infrastructure was rendered un-operational. The damage was so devastating that this posed a big challenge of reconstruction and rehabilitation unlikely to be met without putting extraordinary and multifaceted efforts by the national and international community. For this purpose, the Government of Pakistan established Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) with its State and Provincial organs as SERRA and PERRA in AJK and NWFP respectively to assess the post disaster damages and reconstruct and rehabilitate the affected areas. Since October 2005, we are working for rehabilitation and sustainable reconstruction with an aim to "Build Back Better" in terms of physical infrastructure, size and scope of activities and the quality of services to the unfortunate victims of the earthquake. Reconstruction of health and educational facilities, rebuilding homes and livelihoods has remained our priority. Construction work on roads and bridges to restore the communication facilities is in progress. It is worth mentioning that gender and spatial equity has been ensured in all reconstruction and rehabilitation programmes. After the earthquake the government is planning for the restoration of livelihoods, rehabilitation and reconstruction of infrastructure and services and this has provided a unique opportunity for incorporation of gender dimensions in Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Programme. The Reconstruction Programme is also focusing on other cross cutting issues such as, Human Resource Development, environmental sustainability and public awareness.
Through the SERRA website “www.serra.gov.pk", one can access the complete information about the Reconstruction Programme in AJK. Launching of the web portal is significant leap ahead in Reconstruction and Rehabilitation and will help us to better serve the public by providing timely and accurate information to common people, various local, national & international NGOs and government decision makers while ensuring security and privacy. Over time, other data sources will be added to further improve this service. We are open to suggestions for updating and improving this web site.
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