Among the several United nations agencies taking part in the international relief operation for cholera-stricken areas of India and East Pakistan is UNICEF -- the U.
Among the several United nations agencies taking part in the international relief operation for cholera-stricken areas of India and East Pakistan is UNICEF -- the U.N. Children's Fund. In Copenhagen today, at the UNICEF packing centre, 35 tons of drugs and medical supplies were crated for airlift to Calcutta. The cholera death toll, meanwhile is reported to be over 8,000 -- and climbing rapidly.
SYNOPSIS: UNICEF -- the United Nations Children's Fund -- is one of the international agencies which have mounted relief operations for the cholera crisis in India and East Pakistan. At the UNICEF packing centre in Copenhagen on Monday 35 tons of drugs, medical supplies and other equipment were crated for airlift to the Calcutta area where there are millions of East Pakistani refugees and where thousands have died from cholera.
The shipment, which included on and a half tons of plastic sheeting to repair tents and shelters before the monsoon rains strike in force later this month, left Copenhagen on Monday evening. It will add to the many tons of supplies already being sent out by other countries and relief agencies. In India, meanwhile, the cholera death toll is reported to be over 8,000 -- and climbing rapidly. Several reports say in situation is out of hand, and the Indian Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira-Gandhi, has accused world governments of not reacting sufficiently quickly to her plan for help.
In addition to the cholera death toll, exhaustion and malnutrition have added to the casualties. Refugees in the West Bengal area of India are already undernourished anyway, and many suffer from dysentery -- lowering their resistance to cholera. Help is at last beginning to pour in -- mainly in the form of vaccine to halt the spread of cholera, and saline solution to save those who already have it. But for many, it is too late.