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Chennai flood: Jayalalithaa seeks Rs 8,400 cr, RS MPs offer aid

Jayalalithaa has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking Rs 8,480.92 crore from the National Disaster Response Fund.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
December 3, 2015 2:07:11 am
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa during a meeting to finalize the annual plan 2013-14 for the state in New Delhi on Monday. Express photo by Amit Mehra  10 june 2013 Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa (Source: Express file photo by Amit Mehra)

TAMIL NADU Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking Rs 8,480.92 crore from the National Disaster Response Fund following the damage caused by heavy rainfall in the state.

Presenting the demand afresh in the Lok Sabha Wednesday, AIADMK’s A Arunmozhithevan said the “unprecedented flood situation” should be declared a “national calamity”, adding that at least 170 people have been killed and thousands displaced.

READ | Chennai deluge: Airport shut till December 6

Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha members offered to donate a part of their MPLADS fund for rehabilitation and rescue work. The idea was mooted by CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury, and immediately seconded by Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad, who said that the amount could be decided in consultation with the chairman. Deputy Chairman P J Kurien appealed to the members that the amount should be “sizeable” — Rs 50 lakh to 1 crore or more.

READ | Full coverage of Chennai floods

“I would like to state that timely release of adequate funds by the Union government will help Tamil Nadu to undertake temporary and permanent restoration of infrastructure and other utilities on war-footing basis,” said Arunmozhithevan, participating in a special discussion in the Lok Sabha on the flood situation in South India.

READ | Food, shelter, rescue — via a website

According to the MP, Tamil Nadu requires Rs 2,630.58 crore for temporary restoration and Rs 5,850.34 crore for permanent restoration. “I sincerely pray and hope that the Union government will be more considerate in this regard after assessing the damage,” he said.

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While all the MPs, cutting across party lines, supported the demand, RJD’s Rajesh Ranjan said the PM should visit the area — a demand later endorsed by the Congress. MoS for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy said the situation was being assessed and Home Minister Rajnath Singh would reply to the discussion on Thursday.

In the Rajya Sabha, Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu said the Centre has decided to release Rs 933 crore for rescue and relief operations.

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