CHENNAI: Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to immediately release Rs 5,000 crore, ‘on account’, from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) for taking up relief and restoration works in rain-ravaged Chennai and other parts of the State. Responding to her, the Prime Minister, who rushed to Chennai and undertook an aerial survey of the affected areas, agreed the flood situation in the State was unprecedented, and announced an immediate financial assistance of Rs 1,000 crore, stating that it was over and above the Rs 940 crore sanctioned already.
The Chief Minister held detailed discussions with the Prime Minister at INS Adyar on the damage caused by the heavy rains. She told him that since there had been further destruction after the initial memorandum was submitted, the Tamil Nadu government would be submitting a supplementary memorandum to the Centre shortly.
Apprising the Prime Minister of the magnitude of the calamity that has struck the northern coastal districts of Chennai, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur and Cuddalore, Jayalalithaa pointed out that rainfall in Chennai last month was 101.8 cm, the second highest rainfall recorded since 1918, and emphasised that the massive devastation caused by the floods clearly justified its declaration as a national disaster.
Modi, while expressing concern over the seriousness of the situation, said Chennai was a growth centre and anything that affects the State affects the country. He acceded to the CM’s demand to despatch 10 more Army columns and 20 more NDRF teams in view of the Met warning of heavy rains in the next 48 hours.