Jaya wants Rs 2,000-cr immediate flood aid, gets Rs 940 cr for now

Prime Minister Narendra Modi released Rs 939.63 crore in aid to Tamil Nadu on Monday after chief minister J Jayalalithaa said the state needed Rs 8,491 crore towards flood relief and asked for an immediate release of Rs 2,000 crore.

According to Jayalalithaa, 169 people were killed in the torrential rains and floods that hit Tamil Nadu.

In a letter to Modi, she said: “Many parts of the state have been severely affected due to flooding. (A total of) 169 lives were lost during this northeast monsoon since October 1, and there was widespread damage to property including dwelling units and crops.

“The requirement of funds for immediate rescue and relief and the temporary and permanent restoration of infrastructure has been worked out at Rs 8,481 crores in all.”

Modi also agreed to the Tamil Nadu CM’s demand for a central team to be dispatched to the state to assess the damage and release aid. More funds would be given to the state after the team submits.

The chief minister sought the assistance from the National Disaster Response Fund and other central funds.

Requesting Modi to depute a central team to make its on-the-spot assessment, Jayalalithaa had urged him to release Rs 2,000 crore towards relief and restoration operations right away.

According to Jayalalithaa, infrastructure, including roads and bridges, storm water drains, water supply, sewage and electricity supply systems had been battered in many areas.

“A deep depression of high intensity formed in the Bay of Bengal and hit the Tamil Nadu coast near Marakkanam, causing extremely heavy rains particularly in the four northern coastal districts of Cuddalore, Kancheepuram, Chennai and Tiruvallur,” she said.

According to her, based on the forecast received from the Indian Meteorological Department and the alerts received from the National Disaster Management Agency, adequate precautionary measures were taken which minimised loss to life and property.

“More than 4 lakh people were shifted to relief camps and provided food and shelter. Rescue and relief operations were undertaken on a war footing,” Jayalalithaa told Modi.

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