Mamata seeks Rs 20,000-cr cyclone ‘Yaas’ relief package

Kolkata, May 28 (PTI): West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday submitted a report to Prime Minister Naredra Modi on the damages caused by cyclone ‘Yaas’ in the state, and sought a Rs 20,000-crore package for redevelopment of the worst-affected areas. Modi flew down to Odisha earlier in the day to review the post-cyclone situation, and then made his way to Bengal, where the storm wreaked havoc in the coastal districts. The state has incurred a loss of Rs 20,000 crore due to the cyclone, Banerjee claimed. “We have sought a package of Rs 10,000 crore each for the redevelopment of Digha and the Sunderbans… It could well be that we might not get anything,” she said following an administrative meeting held in the tourist town of Digha.
The meeting between the two leaders lasted for around 15 minutes, an official said.
Meanwhile, a release issued by the Prime Minister’s Office said Modi has announced a financial assistance of Rs 1,000 crore for immediate relief activities.
“Rupees 500 crore would be immediately given to Odisha. Another Rs 500 crore has been announced for West Bengal and Jharkhand, which will be released on the basis of the damage.
“The Union Government will deploy an inter-ministerial team to visit the states to assess the extent of damage, based on which further assistance will be given,” it said.
The PM has also declared an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased and Rs 50,000 for those seriously injured in the cyclone, the release said.
Cyclone ‘Yaas’ rampaged through parts of India’s eastern coast on Wednesday, killing at least four people and forcing more than 21 lakh people to be evacuated to safe shelters in West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand.

PM reviews Cyclone Yaas damages, Odisha demands long term solutions

Bhubaneswar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday reviewed the post-cyclone situation and damages caused by Cyclone Yaas in the state at a meeting here where Odisha government demanded long term solutions to mitigate problems of repeated cyclones and provision of disaster resilient power systems. The state government sought no immediate funds to manage the expenditure incurred in disaster management, but stressed on long term solutions to the problem as Odisha is frequently hit by major calamities like cyclones, Odishas Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) P K Jena told reporters after the meeting.
Immediately after the review meeting which continued for about an hour, attended by Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, two Union Ministers- Dharmendra Pradhan and Pratap Sarangi and senior officials, the Prime Minister left for aerial survey to the worst cyclone affected areas of Balasore and Bdahrak in Odisha, on his way to West Bengal.
The Chief Minister sought both a disaster resilient power infrastructure and a permanent solution to protect the coastal region from storm surges which accompany cyclones, the SRC said adding that Odisha has a long coastline of about 480 kilometers of which above 200 km is vulnerable to tidal surge.
The state has sought no immediate funds or assistance from the Government of India today. The state will manage the situation from its resources. We will assess the damage in seven days and later seek central assistance, Jena said.
Patnaik wanted long term solution to the problem of coastal erosion which adds to the danger from storms in the coastal belt. The Chief Minister also drew attention of the Prime Minister to the disaster resilient power system, the demand for which is being made for last two years. This apart, the CM also empathetically demanded coastal storm surge protection mechanism, Jena said.

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