KARNATAKA

Yediyurappa demands Rs. 500 crore for relief



Special Correspondent

Conducts an aerial survey of flood-hit areas in Gulbarga district

10.2 lakh people living on the banks of the Krishna, Ghataprabha and Bhima affected by floods Standing crops in 93,000 hectares of land destroyed and 4,780 houses damaged in floods Deputy commissioners directed to take up relief work without any delay

GULBARGA: Deputy Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Friday demanded that the Centre release an interim relief of Rs. 500 crore to the State for relief work in flood-hit areas in Belgaum, Bagalkot, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Koppal, Raichur, Shimoga and Uttara Kannada districts.

`Step-motherly treatment'

Addressing presspersons here after conducting an aerial survey of flood-hit areas in Gulbarga district along with Rural Development Minister Govind Karjol and Horticulture Minister Shashikant, Principal Secretary (Finance) Gokulram and Deputy Commissioner Pankajkumar Pandey, Mr. Yediyurappa accused the Centre of according step-motherly treatment to Karnataka in providing assistance.

Funds

He said that while Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh had received Rs. 400 crore and Rs. 250 crore as additional assistance under the Natural Calamity Relief Fund for relief work, the State was yet to receive funds.

According to a preliminary estimation, 10.2 lakh people living on the banks of the Krishna, Ghataprabha and Bhima had been affected by floods, the Deputy Chief Minister said. Nearly 1.09 lakh people had been shifted to safe places and 70,000 to 174 relief centres, he said.

Standing crops in 93,000 hectares of land had been destroyed and 4,780 houses had been damaged, he said.

Twelve persons had died in flood-related incidents, Mr. Yediyurappa said.

Allocation

Mr. Yediyurappa said of the annual allocation of Rs. 126 crore under the Natural Calamity Relief Fund, the Centre had released only Rs. 46 crore to the State.

The State Government had released Rs. 26 crore to the affected districts.

Directive

Mr. Yediyurappa said Gulbarga district had sought Rs. 33 crore for relief work and State the Government had released Rs. 3 crore. Deputy commissioners of the affected districts had been directed to take up relief work without any delay, Mr. Yediyurappa said.

He said that shifting of flood-prone villages on the banks of the rivers would be given top priority.

The State Government with the assistance of the Centre would shift such villages to safe places in a phased manned this year, the Deputy Chief Minister said.

Claims

Referring to the claims of former Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh that the Centre released Rs. 190 crore to shift such villages last year, the Deputy Chief Minister said the Centre withdrew Rs. 157 crore given for flood relief work last year.

Later, it was returned to the State for taking up permanent relief work in the affected areas.

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