Deve Gowda Urges PM Modi To Release Rs 5,000 Crore As Interim Flood Relief For Karnataka
Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda on Monday requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to release Rs 5,000 crore as interim relief to flood-ravaged Karnataka and to notify it as "national calamity."
In a letter to Modi, the Janata Dal (Secular) patriarch said he had not seen such destruction to both human lives and properties in his six decades of political career.
"I request you to release rupees five thousand crore as interim relief pending submission of final memorandum by the state government followed by assessment from a high-level central team and recommendation of the inter-ministerial committee on disaster management on assessment and quantification of the damage suffered by the state due to flood havoc," Gowda said in his letter.
"I hope that the government of India would extend its helping hand in the hours of need to wipe the tears of vast population of the state which has facing a major tragedy and to rebuild their lively hood with all form of assistance from the state and central governments," he said.
However, the Karnataka government has requested the Centre to immediately release Rs 3,000 crore. A total of 2,694 villages in eighty-six taluks of 17 districts in Karnataka have been affected due to floods and rains.
According to information available from the state government, the death toll so far was 42, while 12 were missing. A total of 5,81,897 people have been evacuated and rescued so far, and 1,181 relief camps have been opened where 3,32,629 people are taking shelter.
Gowda said this natural calamity is unprecedented, rare and severe and beyond the coping capacity of the state government and extremely difficult for it to provide rescue, relief and rehabilitation measures through normal allocation available under the national and state disaster response funds.
"I have not seen such unprecedented destruction to both human lives and properties in my six decades of political career. Therefore, I request you to notify this natural disaster as national calamity," he said.
He noted that more than two crore people of the state, one-third of its population have been affected with all 10 major rivers in spate.
Speaking to reporters here, Gowda said depending on the funds released by the Centre, he will meet the Prime Minister and also request him for a "special package."
He will tour the affected areas once the situation slightly improved, the JD(S) leader said adding he had given Rs 2 lakh to the Chief Minister's relief fund.