News Karnataka
Friday, February 03 2023

Karnataka to seek more funds for flood relief, rehab

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Bengaluru: Karnataka would seek more funds from the Centre to speed up relief and rehabilitation works in dozen of districts across the state that were ravaged by heavy monsoon rains and flash floods due to release of excess water from dams on major rivers, an official said on Sunday.

“Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa will seek more funds from the Centre during his official visit to Delhi after Diwali. A revised assessment of the damage caused by floods to agriculture and infrastructure in the state will be presented to Union Home Minster Amit Shah for more funds from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF),” a revenue official told IANS here.

The decision to seek more funds came a day after the Centre on Friday gave Rs 578 crore from NDRF for relief and rehab works in the flood-hit districts.

Bagalkot, Ballari, Belagavi, Bidar, Dharwad, Gadag, Haveri, Hubballi, Kalaburagi, Koppal, Raichur and Yadgir in the state’s north and northwest regions were the worst affected by the incessant rains and flash floods.

According to revised estimates, the state has suffered Rs 9,883-crore losses due to heavy rains from August to October as the southwest monsoon extended till October.

“As the state is eligible for Rs 1,306 crore relief aid from the NDRF, we hope the Centre will release the balance amount to speed up relief and rehab works as per the norms,” said the official.

“Release of excess water from dams across major rivers like Krishna and Bheema in the region and from neighbouring Maharashtra flooded villages/towns and damaged rural infrastructure and crops ahead of harvesting,” the official recalled.

Rural infrastructure, including roads, bridges, state highways, electric poles, telephone lines and houses were destroyed or damaged in the natural disaster.

The state disaster management authority has declared 173 talukas in 25 of the 30 districts across the southern state as flood-affected areas,” said the official.

According to the state agriculture department, crops in 20.6-lakh hectares of farmlands were damaged in October as the southwest monsoon extended beyond September in the coastal, northwest and northern regions of the state.

The state government has already utilised Rs 2,385 crore for rescue and relief operations from the State Disaster Relief Funds (SDRF).

About 48,500 houses were damaged while 1,935 animals (livestock) were lost in the rains and floods.

Horticulture crops in 1,99,236 hectares and plantation crops in 55,808 hectares across the southern state were also damaged in the natural calamity.

“A central team of observers are due to visit the state after Diwali to assess the losses due to heavy rains and floods,” added the official.

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