The UPA government on Monday claimed the credit for averting a huge human tragedy,saying the massive evacuation of people in Orissa and Andhra Pradesh could be carried out because of the early prediction of the exact track and intensity of the cyclone by the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
Minister of Science & Technology,Earth Sciences,S Jaipal Reddy and Minister of State for Home M Ramachandran addressed a special press conference at the AICC headquarters. Because of our early prediction,huge evacuation took place. Nearly a million people were evacuated. When it comes to evacuation numbers,this is a world record, said Reddy.
Reddy said the cyclone prediction was made possible because of the investments made in the 11th five year plan,to the tune of Rs 750 crore,and listed the equipment acquired as part of the modernisation process.
Asked why he was using the AICC platform for what was essentially his ministrys press conference,Reddy was forthright. I will be frank. These investments were made during the UPA (rule) and none of us can be sanyasis. Why should you hold a grudge if I give credit to UPA? he said.
Asked how much credit he would give to the Orissa government,Reddy replied,I do not want to make any political point. IMD was able to make a prediction four days in advance. The NDMA did its job. State governments of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh did their job, he said.