Around 237 people lost their lives in rains

The Maharashtra government on Thursday announced a special relief package of Rs. 1934 crore for Vidarbha and other districts, which were ravaged by the relentless rain last month.

Around 237 people — 107 of them from Vidarbha — lost their lives in the rains. It completely destroyed 3800 houses, while 36,000 were partially damaged.

More than 50 per cent of crops over the farm land of four lakh hectares were destroyed. Rains have also destroyed 5677-km -long roads and 502 bridges.

Continuous rains

“There are certain parts of the State which are facing continuous rains, while some are facing drought. We fought with drought for last two years and are experiencing incessant rains. The government wants to stress need of finding permanent solutions,” said Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.

Mr. Chavan was answering a seven-hour-long discussion over the issue, in which the Opposition had demanded the declaration of ‘wet drought’ in Vidarbha.

Relief to families

The government announced a relief of Rs. 2.5 lakh to the families of the dead. Mr. Chavan also made it clear that the State government will be sending a proposal to the Centre to modify the definition of “heavy rains.”

“As per the Centre’s rule, heavy rains cannot be considered as natural calamity as relief can be given only at the time of floods. We will be sending a proposal to modify that,” he told the Assembly.

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