Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa on Thursday told Prime Minister Narendra Modi that the flood destruction must be declared a national disaster, and requested Rs.5,000 crore as immediate aid to the state.
Jayalalithaa met Modi after he made an aerial survey of the flood affected areas in Tamil Nadu, particularly Chennai. The disaster has left at least 269 people dead and caused widespread destruction.
She said in a statement that she emphasized to Modi that the massive devastation caused by floods justified the declaration of this calamity as a national disaster.
Jayalalithaa requested that an ‘on account’ release of at least Rs.5,000 crore be made from the from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) immediately.
Responding to Jayalalithaa’s request for an immediate release of Rs.5,000 crore, Mode announced the release of Rs.1,000 crore form the NDRF.
Modi, who flew into Chennai earlier in the day, said he had directed that Rs.1,000 crore be released to Tamil Nadu for immediate relief to the flood victims.
Modi also acceded to Jayalalithaa’s request to deploy 10 additional army columns and 20 NDRF teams.
Referring to the Rs.940 crore released by the central government Jayalalithaa said the amount included Rs.133.79 crore of arrears from 2014-15 towards the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) and Rs.254.62 crore towards the second instalment of SDRF for the current fiscal.
Jayalalithaa also told Modi that the Rs.940 crore package included a sum of Rs.552 crore towards special assistance compensating Tamil Nadu for the loss consequent on the recommendations of the 14th Finance Commission.
This amount is intended for specific projects and not for flood relief, Jayalalithaa told Modi.
–Indo-Asian News Agency