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Centre yet to provide aid for rain losses: Himachal govt

Revenue Minister Kaul Singh Thakur admitted,during question hour,that the state has not received minimal help against the Rs 1972.08 crore it had sought from the Centre

Frayed tempers dominated proceedings in the Himachal Pradesh Assembly on Thursday with MLAs,particularly from the Opposition,conveying their displeasure at what they termed was the Centre’s bias in failing to provide aid despite the state having suffered ‘huge losses’ due to unprecedented rains,landslides and flash-floods. They drew a parallel to the situation in Uttarakhand,which has been afforded maximum help.

Revenue Minister Kaul Singh Thakur admitted,during question hour,that the state has not received minimal help against the Rs 1972.08 crore it had sought from the Centre .

The central government has,so far,provided the state Rs Rs 136.24 crore in two equal instalments. The state government has pitched in with Rs 129.24 crore for relief work.

Thakur informed the House that efforts were on to seek a special relief package from the Centre on the line of Uttarakhand as state,he said,has also suffered huge losses in terms of lives and property with the maximum damage having been caused in Kinnaur. He added that the state government was trying its best to provide relief to victims with available resources as the Centre is yet to provide any help.

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“Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh has written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to expedite the release of Rs 1972.08 crore based on the damage estimates sent by the state government so that restoration and relief work could be taken up at the earliest,” Thakur said. He pacified the members by pointing out that Uttarakhand had suffered way more damage.

The total death toll due to rains in Himcahal has risen to 64 and the state government has estimated the total losses to be around Rs 2,934 crore. As per the state’s statistics,as many as 9,812 buildings were damaged while 24,390 animals perished and four people are still missing.

First published on: 30-08-2013 at 04:08:12 am
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