TN MPs delegation meets Amit Shah, seeks early release of RS 37,907 cr flood relief

Chennai, Jan 14 (UNI) A delegation of MPs from Tamil Nadu met met Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi and urged him for early release of Rs 37,907 crore funds sought by Chief Minister M.K.Stalin towards flood relief.

The delegation, which comprised MPs from the DMK and its alliance parties and led by DMK Parliamentary Party Leader T.R.Baalu, met Mr Amit Shah on Saturday evening.

An official release here said the MPs submitted a memorandum to Mr Amit Shah seeking release of Rs 37,907.21 crore, which included Rs 15,645.59 crore for temporary restoration and Rs 22,261.62 crore for permanent restoration works, in the Cyclone Michaung hit Chennai and neighbouring districts of Tiruvallur, Chengalpattu and Kancheepuram in the first week of December and rain hit southern districts of the State, two weeks later.

Of the total funds, Rs 19,692.69 crore (Rs 7,033.45 crore for temporary restoration and Rs 12,659.24 crore for permanent restoration) was sought for the damages caused by Cyclone Michaung and Rs.18,214.52 crore (Rs 8,612.14 crore for temporary restoration and Rs 9,602.38 crore for permanent restoration) for the havoc caused by unprecedented rains in the southern districts.

While the State Government undertook immediate rescue and relief efforts using its own financial resources and the funds available with the State Disaster Response Fund, the magnitude of these disasters was “colossal” and, therefore, full restoration and rehabilitation cannot be done without adequate support from the National Disaster Response Fund, the MPs said.

In the memorandum, copies of which were released to the media, the MPs said Tamil Nadu had faced two unprecedented natural disasters in the month of December 2023. Cyclonic storm ‘Michaung’

brought extremely very heavy rainfall on December 3 and 4 and Chennai, Thiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu districts were severely affected because of the cyclone and consequent heavy flooding.

Close on its wake, the southern districts of the State–Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi and Kanniyakumari districts received unprecedented, extremely heavy rainfall on December 17 and 18.

As a result, the infrastructure both public and private and livelihoods of the people have been devastated, it said.

In spite of adequate preparedness and precautions taken by the State, these extreme weather events have caused huge damage to public and private property, including waterbodies, drinking water systems, roads, bridges and electricity infrastructure.

The memorandum said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had visited the cyclone hit areas in Chennai on December 7 and Union Minister for Finance Nirmala Sitharaman had visited flood hit areas of Thoothukudi on December 26.

It said Mr Stalin had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in person on December 19 in New Delhi and sought immediate Central Assistance to support the relief measures.

The Tamil Nadu Government had also presented two Memoranda to the Union Government seeking assistance.

“In this regard, we wish to bring to your kind attention that the Inter-Ministerial Central Team had visited the Northern Districts on December 12 and 13 and Southern districts on December 20 and 21 and again the Central Team is in Southern Districts from January 12”, it said.

Noting that the State Government had to undertake immediate rescue and relief measures which are being done using its own resources and the available funds with SDRF, it said since the magnitude of the natural disasters is colossal and without adequate and unstinted support from NDRF, full restoration and rehabilitation could not be done.

Almost a month has gone since these twin calamities and the affected areas are struggling from the devastation.

“Hence, we request you to kindly take immediate action on the Memoranda submitted by the State and sanction the funds sought for by the Government of Tamil Nadu from NDRF for the two unprecedented natural disasters, without further delay”, it said.

Mr Vaiko, MDMK General Secretary; K. Jayakumar of Congress; K. Subbarayan of CPI; Su. Venkatesan of CPI(M); K. Navas Kani of Indian Union Muslim League; and D. Ravikumar and A.K.P. Chinnaraj, DMK were among the other MPs who were part of the delegation.

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