New Delhi, December 14
Members of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha today expressed concern over the devastation caused by cyclone Vardah in Tamil Nadu and demanded that the Centre announce aid for the state government to help restore normalcy in the state.
Responding to the concern by the members, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley assured the members that the Centre will take all necessary steps to restore normalcy in cyclone-hit Tamil Nadu.
Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Communist Party of India leader D Raja said the Centre should provide aid to the Tamil Nadu Government to deal with the affect of the cyclone.
“Tamil Nadu has been badly affected due to the cyclone. The cyclone has destroyed several districts in the state. Several people have died. Thousands of trees have been uprooted. The Centre should come forward to help the state,” Raja said.
He said many parts of the state were in the dark as electricity and telecommunication services were crippled due to the cyclone.
”The state government has asked for Rs 1,000 crore disaster relief fund,” he said.
Congress leader and former Finance Minister P Chidambaram also demanded that the Centre announce financial aid for Tamil Nadu.
“The government should respond to the Tamil Nadu government’s request of financial aid. The Prime Minister and the Finance Minister must consult each other immediately and today they must announce a package or financial aid for the affected state,” Chidambaram said.
While complementing the government for positioning the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) in advance and making Army columns available for rescue, Chidambaram said more needed to be done.
“What they have done is good but more needs to be done. Make sure that the ATMs and bank branches are replenished in Tamil Nadu so that people can withdraw their own money,” Chidambaram said.
Responding to the concerns by members, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the Centre will take all necessary steps to restore normalcy in cyclone-hit Tamil Nadu.
“I have heard suggestions given by the members. Whatever needs to be done immediately, I will certainly have a discussion with the government and take appropriate steps,” Jaitley said.
New Delhi, December 14