Staff Correspondent

Says reports on drought, floods have been sent to Centre

State Government to seek funds from Centre

for rehabilitation

Karunakara Reddy says food-processing unit will be set up in Telagi

DAVANGERE: Minister for Revenue G. Karunakara Reddy has said that the Government will soon prepare a statement on the loss of private and public property and crops owing to heavy rainfall all over the State in the past 10 days. The statement will be sent to the Union Government to seek funds for relief measures.

After visiting various places in his home constituency of Harapanahalli where 267 houses collapsed owing to heavy rainfall, Mr. Reddy told presspersons here on Thursday that revenue officials had been directed to assess the losses and submit a report. The Government, after receiving reports from each district, would submit a consolidated report to the Centre.

To a question, he said that emergency rehabilitation was being provided using money from the Calamity Relief Fund. Mr. Reddy said that the State Government had already sent two reports to the Centre — one on rain damage and the other on drought. The total loss during the floods earlier in the season was estimated at Rs. 1,571 crore, and a report had been to the Centre, he said. The State Government had estimated the loss from drought at Rs. 871 crore, he said.

The Minister said that the Government had been offering whatever assistance was possible to farmers affected by the heavy rainfall and 50 per cent of the premium on crop insurance was being paid by the Government. The Government was also chalking out other measures to help farmers affected by floods and drought, he said.

Allegation denied

The Minister denied the allegation made by Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president R.V. Deshpande that the Government had not presented its case on floods and drought to the Centre properly. He said the Union Government had, in fact, appreciated the report prepared in accordance with the guidelines set. He said that the Union Government should not politicise the distribution of relief grants to the State.

To a question, the Minister said that the Government planned to set up a food-processing unit in Telagi in Harapanahalli, and the district administration was in the process of acquiring land for the project. He said that he had learnt that the farmers of Telagi had opposed the acquisition of land, but promised them adequate compensation in return. He said that development could not take place without industrialisation. The unit would employ several people from Harapanahalli and surrounding villages.

Earlier the Minister visited Gajapura, Kesarahalli, Gowripura and various extensions in Harapanahalli town and assessed the damage caused by rain. He also distributed compensation to several people who lost their houses and other valuables in the rain. Assistant Commissioner Rajanna, tahsildar Prakash and executive officer Rangaswamy were present.