Tamil Nadu

‘State must foot bill for rehabilitation’

Sum of ₹1,277 crore available in the State Disaster Relief Fund account: Centre

Maintaining that rehabilitation of people affected by cyclones was required to be undertaken by the State government concerned with its own resources, the Centre has informed the Rajya Sabha that a sum of ₹1,277 crore was available in the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) account for management of relief, necessitated by notified natural calamities in Tamil Nadu during 2018.

While responding to queries raised by Rajya Sabha MPs Sasikala Pushpa Ramaswamy and R. Lakshmanan over funds sought by Tamil Nadu government towards Cyclone Gaja relief, the Centre maintained that as per the National Disaster Management Policy, the primary responsibility for disaster management relief and rehabilitation rested with the States.

“The rehabilitation of people [affected] due to cyclone is required to be undertaken by the concerned [sic] State government from its own resources, as per its existing rehabilitation policy, since execution of relief and rehabilitation measures on the ground is the responsibility of the concerned State,” said Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju.

Only for immediate relief

To support the affected people of the State, the Central government had released assistance of ₹353.70 crore from the SDRF as an interim relief on December 3. By taking into account the opening balance of ₹491.62 crore and releases of both the instalments of Central and State share of ₹786 crore, an amount of ₹1,277.62 crore is available in the SDRF account for management of relief necessitated by notified natural calamities during 2018. Assistance from SDRF/ NDRF is provided as per norms only for immediate relief as per norms to the victims of notified disasters and not for compensation of loss as suffered/ claimed. Additional expenditure, if any, incurred over and above or on other than approved items/ norms, was required to be met by the States from their own resources, the Centre said. Based on the interim memorandum submitted by the Tamil Nadu government, an Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) made on-the-spot assessment of damages caused by the Cyclone Gaja.

“Upon receipt of the IMCT report (pending for want of specific information awaited from Tamil Nadu), it will be placed before the High Level Committee (HLC) for consideration as per established procedure,” the Centre said.

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Printable version | Apr 3, 2020 11:44:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/state-must-foot-bill-for-rehabilitation/article25736983.ece

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