GUWAHATI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced a financial assistance of Rs 2,350 crore for the flood and landslide-affected Northeast.
The PM, who was in Guwahati on a day-long tour to review the situation and relief measures, announced the package after holding a series of meetings with the chief ministers of four Northeastern states — Assam, Manipur, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh.
Assam’s finance minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said Modi announced a special package of Rs.2,000 crore for relief and rehabilitation of the affected in the Northeast. He said the exact share of the states would be worked out and announced later.
“An additional Rs.100 crore was announced to institute a high-powered committee with scientists, technocrats and bureaucrats from Central and state governments to study the course of the Brahmaputra. Another Rs.250 crore was announced for immediate flood relief in Assam,” Sarma said.
According to official sources, the financial aid was meant for relief, rehabilitation, reconstruction and flood mitigation.
In a joint memorandum, the state’s ruling BJP, Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) urged the PM to recognise the flood and erosion in the state as a “national problem”, constitute a group of ministers to suggest a multi-pronged permanent solution to the problem, take measures to strengthen 5,000 km of the existing embankments etc.
Emerging from the meeting, Nagaland chief minister, T R Zeliang, said he had apprised the PM of the damage caused by flood and landslides in his state.
“The Prime Minister has assured that he will send a Central team to Nagaland to assess the damage. The Central assistance would be determined based on the team’s report,” Zeliang told reporters.
Arunachal, the second most affected state after Assam, also submitted a memorandum to the PM, the state’s chief minister, Pema Khandu, said.
Lal Thanhawla, Mizoram CM, could not make it to the meeting but his government had sent a memorandum which was submitted to the PM. Of these five states, Assam had recorded the worst flood in a decade.
The PM had on Monday announced ex-gratia payment of Rs.2 lakh each to the next of kin of the deceased and Rs.50,000 to the seriously injured under Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund.
The Northeast, which makes up eight per cent of the country’s land areas, contains one-third of the country's water resources