Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa has said that the loss to public and private properties following the rain in the State will cross Rs. 20,000 crore. He has called upon the Centre to immediately despatch a study team to assess the damage.

In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, Mr. Yeddyurappa said the Centre should treat the unprecedented rain and floods in the State as a “national calamity” and immediately release Rs. 10,000 crore for relief measures.

With the rain affecting an estimated 17.8 million people in 15 districts across the State, Mr. Yeddyurappa said: “relief and reconstruction operations need to be taken up on a big scale considering the magnitude of the tragedy.”

The Chief Minister said the State Government had released Rs. 205 crore for immediate relief measures such as opening relief centres to provide shelter and succour to the affected people.

Centre thanked

Mr. Yeddyurappa expressed his “sincere thanks” to the Union Government for readily responding to the State’s request for assistance in the rescue and relief operations.

Personnel and equipment from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as well as the Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters, which were made available expeditiously, had proved useful in evacuating the marooned families from the flooded areas. “The Centre has provided eight helicopters and 38 boats for relief work,” said a statement from the Chief Minister’s office.

Meanwhile, convener of ABIDe Rajeev Chandrashekar, MP, has announced a contribution of Rs. 25 lakh to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. Besides, Mr. Chandrashekar has appealed to the people and corporates of Bangalore and other parts of the country to donate generously to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.