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Children still haunted by fear of tsunami
Usha RamManonhar in Kochi | December 22, 2005 12:12 IST
Fear of the deadly waves continue to haunt children of the coastal villages of Kollam, Alapuzha and Ernakulam districts of Kerala where the deadly tsunami had claimed at least 200 lives in 2004.
As December 26 approaches, many children in these regions are gripped by terror as they fear the region would be hit by another tidal wave like last year and wipe away whatever they have.
A study conducted on 15,577 children showed that even now 7,084 children showed signs of fear, 547 were still in a state of shock and 29 children were unable to speak or act.
Fear of water continues to haunt about 2,468 children and 2,539 children feared sound, 1,217 had sleep problems and three children even harboured suicidal ideas, it said.
At least 107 children have shown severe psychosocial problems and 9,512 children suffered from mild psychosocial problems, according to Betty K Joseph, project manager, Peoples Council for Social Justice, who conducted a two phase study on the affected children and people in the tsunami-hit villages of Kollam, Alapuzha and Ernakulam districts.
Joseph said as the first anniversary of the tsunami was nearing, children were showing signs of a fear complex. "We have intensified counselling for children and for adults too," she said.
Commemorative programmes would also be held on December 26 and 27 in the affected areas.