‘Rains cause extensive damage to crops and houses’

A senior official has been deputed to each of the rain-affected district as ‘special officer’ to oversee the relief measures in the aftermath of the torrential rain, Transport Minister Botcha Satyanarayana has said.

Mr. Satyanarayana held a review meeting with the officials, MLAs and party leaders along with Minister for Infrastructure and Investment Ganta Srinivasa Rao at the Government Circuit House here on Saturday.

Later briefing the media, Mr. Satyanarayana said that the heavy rains as a result of the low pressure in the Bay of Bengal had caused damage to crops, destroyed houses and inundation of low-lying areas in 16 districts in Seemandhra and Telangana regions. Srikakulam in north Andhra bore the brunt of two natural calamities one after the other. About half of the 80,000 people of low-lying areas in the State, who were shifted to relief camps, were from Srikakulam. A total of 7,000 houses were damaged and crop in 6 lakh hectares was damaged, according to preliminary estimates. The exact loss could be ascertained only after the water receded.

He said that instructions were issued to the officials to supply drinking water through tankers, wherever required. The officials had formed teams and were visiting the affected areas.

Compensation

Replying to queries from the media, Mr. Satyanarayana said that Rs.20 crore of the Rs.30 crore, promised for providing compensation to those affected by Neelam cyclone in the past, was received so far. Half of the amount was disbursed to the beneficiaries while the rest couldn’t be distributed due to the Samaikyandhra agitation. He appealed to the beneficiaries to open back accounts and said that the compensation amount would be credited to their account directly.

Heavy loss

Mr. Srinivasa Rao said that the loss in Visakhapatnam district was put at Rs.66.70 crore as per preliminary estimates. Union Minister K. Chiranjeevi would also tour the flood-affected areas of the district in the next few days.

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