The State government has raised a demand to modify a criterion applied by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) while assessing the damage caused by floods.
A Central team to assess the flood damage has completed its tour of the affected areas in western Maharashtra and Konkan. On Sunday, the team members held a meeting with State officials, including Chief Secretary Ajoy Mehta. Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Chandrakant Patil was also present.
Mr. Patil said, “The floods have not only damaged the agriculture but also the infrastructure. On account of this, farmers are going to suffer for the next two-three years.”
Mr. Mehta, while making a presentation before the Central team members, said, “Kolhapur and Sangli are two topmost agri-producer districts in the State. Major losses have been found in horticulture. We urge you to apply a different criterion for the losses of sugar cane and grapes than those applied to other crops.”
Other points raised by the government include the major setback to the dairy industry due to the floods and women being the primary sufferers. Mr. Mehta said apart from rural areas, urban parts suffered major losses and it is important to provide assistance to small businesses, hawkers and stalls.
“Financial assistance is also required to construct elevated roads or bridges for the villages that were submerged. The State has planned a scheme to relocate those living on the riverbanks by giving them pucca houses elsewhere,” he said.
The Central team that landed in the State on August 27 visited Sangli, Satara, Kolhapur, Sindhudurg, Ratnagiri, Raigad, Thane and Palghar districts in two groups.
The team under V. Thiruppuggaz, joint secretary of NDMA, included Central officials from power, water resources, road, finance, agriculture and rural development departments. The State has already submitted a memorandum seeking ₹6,800 crore relief package from the centre. Mr. Patil said a detailed memorandum will also be submitted after the visit of the Central team.
Two days ago, the team’s site visit had come under controversy after its members advised locals to not take sugar cane crop and instead opt for rice.