BENGALURU: Karnataka is caught between the two extremes of drought and floods, and the state government is ready to face any situation, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa said.“The state is witnessing Nature’s fury, that it had not seen in the past 45 years. More than half the state is flooded but at least five districts haven’t received enough rain, creating a drought-like situation,” he said at the Independence Day celebrations in Bengaluru on Thursday.
The farming community is the worst hit as crops on 4.69 lakh hectares have been lost due to heavy rain and floods, he said, adding that the Centre responded to the state’s request for help and sent in National Disaster Response Force personnel, Army, IAF helicopters and rescue boats.
“The natural disaster has left a trail of death and destruction, destroying properties and assets worth thousands of crores of rupees. We are still assessing the damage. Once we get the final estimate of losses suffered, we will seek more assistance from the Union government,” the CM said. On Friday, he is meeting Prime Minister Modi in New Delhi and is likely to discuss the floods and seek assistance.
The CM said Kannadigas must get a lion’s share in jobs available in Karnataka, and the government’s policy echoes this view. “We are committed to ensuring that the Kannadigas’ self-respect and job opportunities are never compromised or under threat. At the same time, in the federal structure, we are ready to offer equal opportunities to all those who come to Karnataka, seeking employment.”
With the 2014-19 industrial policy set to end in September, the government will soon come up with a new policy for comprehensive growth of industry, and launch a new policy for the textile and readymade garment industry from 2019 to 2024, the CM said.
J&K will progress
Yediyurappa said that after abrogation of Article 370 and 35A, Jammu and Kashmir will join the mainstream and Kashmiri Pandits who had left the state can return to their land with confidence and pride, and rebuild their lives. Citizens will live without worries and development will soon be visible, he said.