KALABURAGI: As the water level in the swollen Bhima river, which has caused extensive damage to standing crop and properties, began to recede, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Wednesday surveyed the devastation caused in the North Karnataka districts during an aerial survey. The situation remains grim as around six lakh cusecs of water is being released into the Bhima river from dams in Maharashtra, and the Army, NDRF, SDRF personnel and the local administration have been directed to be on high alert.
During the survey of flood-hit areas in Kalaburgi, Bidar and Raichur in an Indian Air Force helicopter, the CM witnessed the damage to standing crops and properties. Due to bad weather conditions, he had to cancel his plans to take stock of the situation in other parts of Kalaburgi and also visit to Vijayapura.
After his marathon meetings for over three hours with senior officers from the flood-hit districts at Kalaburgi airport, the CM said he cannot announce any fresh compensation due to the Model Code of Conduct in force for the legislative council and bypolls to assembly segments on November 3. He, however, directed the officials to take up relief works as per NDRF and SDRF norms, to ensure adequate supply of food and medicines in relief camps, and prevent outbreak of communicable diseases.
Funds allotted for flood-hit dists: CM
During the meeting, the CM also directed the officials to give a detailed report on extent of flood damage. Before embarking on the aerial survey, the CM, who spoke to mediapersons at Jindal Vijayanagar Airport in Ballari, said funds have been allotted for the flood-affected districts and more will be released after discussing with the officials.
After the meeting with officials at the Kalaburagi airport, the CM was to continue his aerial survey of some taluks in the district as well as of Vijayapura district in the afternoon. But the skies opened up and he had to call it off. Yediyurappa had to wait till the arrival of a special aircraft from Hubballi after refuelling and returned to Bengaluru from Kalaburagi.
He was accompanied by Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Animal Husbandry Minister Prabhu Chavan and Commissioner of State Disaster Management Authority, Manoj Rajan. The CM and his entourage did not visit any flood-hit areas, as demanded by the opposition Congress.With the floods causing a drinking water crisis, in Kalaburagi and other places, the CM said local officers have been directed to solve the problem on priority by providing water in tankers. Instructions have also been given to solve the power crisis and take up road repair works.
Kalaburagi district in-charge secretary Kapil Mohan and Deputy Commissioner V V Jyothsna, who briefed the CM, said nine villages were fully submerged and 93 villages were partially submerged over the last five days. In all, 36,692 people from 102 villages have been shifted to relief centres. Standing crop in 36,000 hectares have been badly affected in Yadgir district and about 10 villages were affected due to the overflowing Bhima river.