Thirteen days after Cyclone Nisarga wreaked havoc in parts of Maharashtra, an Inter-Ministerial Central Government team Tuesday visited parts of Raigad district that were severely affected by the severe cyclonic storm.
The six-member delegation included joint secretary, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Rameshkumar Ganta, and officers from the Union ministries of finance, energy, rural development, agriculture and road transport and highways.
The team visited villages Akshi, Nagaon, Nagaon beach, Chaul, and Agrav in Alibag; Nandgaon, Rajapur and Murud in Murud taluka; Adgaon, Dive Agar in Shrivardhan; and Harihareshwar, the Raigad district administration informed Tuesday. The team interacted with villagers and visited a school in Shrivardhan to assess the damage caused by the cyclone. It also saw a short film prepared by the youth in Harihareshwar about their village, before proceeding to Ratnagiri district, also affected by the cyclone.
The central team asked Raigad District Collector Nidhi Chaudhari to ensure that while assessing the damage in numbers, the regional officers of the agriculture department, the fisheries department, the revenue department and the power department must take note of the minute details of damage suffered by the locals and prepare a report.
Earlier on Tuesday, Chaudhari made a presentation about the damage caused by the cyclone in parts of Raigad at the district headquarters in Alibag. The district administration said that the central team will revisit Raigad after studying the report prepared by the administration.
While 1,976 villages in Raigad had been relegated to the dark after large-scale damage to power sub-stations and electricity poles after Nisarga struck, the district administration said, so far, it was able to restore power in 1,053 villages. This meant that of the 6,38,859 power consumers in the district, 4,25,305 were now availing power supply.
Of 32 power sub-stations that collapsed as the cyclone made landfall, 29 have been restored, according to the district administration. Of the 5,507 high-tension electricity poles that fell, 1,821 have been re-erected and of the 11,089 low-tension electricity poles damaged, 1,887 have been installed again.
Raigad MP Sunil Tatkare said power supply has been restored by over 50 per cent but some villages in Shrivardhan and Mhasla were still awaiting power. He added that cell phone connectivity had now been restored in most parts of the district.
“We have a meeting with the Chief Minister tomorrow and we will make a case for compensation for horticulture damage, especially mango and coconut orchards, for fishermen and the tourism sector. Many small tourist guesthouses that people ran with four-five rooms have been damaged. So, we will ask the government to consider compensating them,” said Tatkare.
He added while the Centre can also extend aid according to NDRF norms, it may be urged to give this special consideration since such a cyclone had not struck the west coast in over 100 years. “If the Centre also helps, it will ease the burden on the state,” he said.
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