Ramesh reiterates demand for Army

Says CM should shed false prestige

Updated - August 19, 2018 07:34 am IST

Published - August 18, 2018 11:30 pm IST - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM

 Ramesh Chennithala says the situation is grim in 
many places.

Ramesh Chennithala says the situation is grim in many places.

Leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala has again asked Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to entrust the rescue and relief operations in the flood-affected areas of the State fully to the defence forces.

“The Chief Minister should shed the false prestige and entrust the task of rescuing the marooned people and supply of relief materials to the defence forces,” Mr. Chennithala told a press conference here on Saturday.

Blaming the State government for delay in rescuing the marooned people, the Leader of the Opposition said the Chief Minister instead of spelling out statistics of the rescue materials should demand more defence forces to save the lives of the stranded people and to make available food, clothing and medicines to them.

“The situation is grave and grim in many places like Thiruvalla, Pandalam, Ranni, Aranmula, Paravoor, Angamaly, Aluva and Chalakudy. The situation in Upper Kuttanad is also getting worse. Even after four days, the authorities are not able to effectively intervene. Bringing more defence forces, paramilitary troops and unmanned aircraft can change the situation. They can provide timely food and medicines to the stranded. There is no politics behind the demand to call Army,” he said.

The Leader of the Opposition said the State can supervise the rescue and relief operations by the defence forces. “We are cooperating fully with the government. I had also made the request to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to entrust the work full to defence forces,” he said replying to queries.

The Centre and the State should cooperate and utilise the services of the Southern Air Command and Navy to expedite the rescue and relief works.

Mr. Chennithala said he expected an interim financial assistance of ₹1,000 crore from the Prime Minister to the State.

To a query, the Leader of the Opposition said the CPI(M) State secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan is trying to cover the lapse of the government at a time when the people are battling for life.

“It is an unprecedented situation in the State and lapses are there on the part of the government,” he said.

Yechury coming

CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yehcury would reach here on Sunday and proceed to Alappuzha to see the flood havoc.

Mr. Yechury would visit one of the relief camps in the city before proceeding to Alappuzha, CPI(M) district leadership said here on Saturday.

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