Kerala floods: Centre sought over Rs 290 crore for aircraft rescue operations, claims chief minister
Pinarayi Vijayan said the money in the Chief Minister’s Disaster Relief Fund will not be sufficient to pay off the state’s debts.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told the Legislative Assembly on Thursday that the Centre has sought Rs 290.74 crore from the state as compensation for launching aircraft that helped in rescue and relief operations during the floods in August, The Indian Express reported.
Vijayan said that the funds that have reached the Chief Minister’s Disaster Relief Fund will not be sufficient to pay off the state’s debts after the floods. He said that till November 27, an amount of Rs 2,683 crore had been deposited in the fund.
“The amount of money spent so far from the fund is Rs 688.48 crore,” Vijayan told the Assembly according to The News Minute. “Apart from this, we are expecting a cost of Rs 1,357 crore to repair the damages caused to various houses. According to the various agencies under the World Bank and the United Nations, an estimated amount of Rs 31,000 crore will have to be spent to rebuild the state.”
The State Disaster Relief Fund has collected an amount of Rs 987.73 crores, Vijayan said. However, Rs 586.04 crores have already been used, he added. “Only if we get Rs 706.74 crore more can we finish paying off all the debts,” the chief minister told the Assembly.
Centre has sanctioned additional Rs 2,500 crore, say officials
Meanwhile, unidentified government officials said that the Centre has sanctioned an additional Rs 2,500 crore for relief and rehabilitation work in Kerala. Earlier, only Rs 600 crore had been approved.
The officials said that a committee headed by Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba had cleared Rs 3,100 crore as against the Rs 4,800 crore the Kerala government had demanded in September. This includes the Rs 600 crore sanctioned earlier. However, a high-level panel headed by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and comprising Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh will decide the final package.