TRIVANDRUM: The Kerala government on Wednesday announced a flood relief package with an immediate financial aid of up to Rs 10,000 each for all calamity-hit families which had suffered losses in the torrential rains.
A sum of Rs 4 lakh would be given to those whose houses had been fully damaged or had become uninhabitable and Rs 10 lakh to those who had lost their houses as well as land in the rain fury and landslides, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting.
On the basis of the intensity of the catastrophe and gravity of the losses,a notification would be issued soon declaring the respective villages as "calamity-hit.
" Those families, in whose houses floodwaters had entered, those who had stayed in houses which had been damaged partially or completely and those who had shifted to government recognised relief camps after being alerted by authorities would be considered "flood-hit families," he said.
"This time, the landslides, reported in about 64 places, had led to an increase in the death toll. An immediate financial aid up to Rs 10,000 will be given from the State Disaster Response Fund to the calamity-hit families as per the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) criteria. Compensation would be given to the families of those who were killed in the natural calamity," he said.
Compensation would also be given for the crop loss, repair and rebuild of damaged roads and buildings and for the maintenance of drinking water and irrigation projects.
Besides the families in the flood-hit areas, fishermen in the coastal belt would be given 35 kg free rice.
A ministerial sub-committee, with ministers E P Jayarajan, E Chandrasekharan, K Krishnankutty, Kadannappally Ramachandran and A K Saseendran, has been set up to ensure that the compensation was given in a time-bound manner and to assess the loss suffered by traders and commercial establishments due to the rain fury.
An official panel, chaired by Chief Secretary Tom Jose, has been entrusted with the task of preparing a detailed memorandum to submit to the Centre after calculating the loss suffered by the state.
The government's aim was to mobilise maximum resources to face the present calamity in the state, Vijayan said, adding that the Centre had also cooperated with the relief operations.
"Kerala is just recovering from last year's deluge," he said.
Vijayan also cautioned people against malicious campaign asking people to refrain from contributing to the Chief Minister's Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF) and urged them to liberally donate cutting across all differences.
Pointing out that the CMDRF was transparent and anyone could examine it, he said only the deserving will get the benefits from the funds.
State ministers would be contributing Rs one lakh each to the fund, he said.
Fresh textbooks would be distributed to school students who had lost their books in the floods, Vijayan added.
As per government figures,95 people have died in floods and landslides in the state since August 8.
This is the second consecutive year that the state has been hit by the rain fury which had claimed over 400 lives and displaced lakhs of people last year.
The Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA) has issued an emergency helpline number ‘1077’ for people in the state.