Cyclone Titli: Patnaik urges Centre to provide instant aid for restoration work

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has urged Centre to provide immediate assistance to the state for undertaking relief and restoration work in areas affected by Cyclone Titli which hit the state in October.

Patnaik in a letter to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, said: “I seek your personal attention in the matter for an immediate release of central assistance to Odisha for undertaking the repair and restoration works, squaring up the liabilities and smooth management of other disasters.”

The cyclonic storm caused flood and landslides that had severely affected about 60.31 lakh people in 128 blocks under 17 districts of Odisha.

“The State Government has taken prompt action to provide the required assistance to the affected population and immediate restoration of the damaged infrastructure and services within the shortest possible time,” the letter added.

The State government in the letter further stated that it had submitted a memorandum to the Centre seeking the assistance of Rs 2023.13 crore against a total requirement of Rs 2779.32 crore for relief and restoration measures.

Pointing out that the state has not received any assistance from the government even after the Inter-Ministerial central team finished on-the-spot assessment of the damages during the first week of November, the Chief Minister wrote, “I had requested the Prime Minister on October 18 for release of an interim assistance of Rs 1000 crore pending final decision of the high-level committee on the memorandum.”

“In the meantime, Rs 1689.13 crore has been released for relief and restoration measures exhausting the entire amount available in the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF), hence, assistance from National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) is urgently required for replenishing the SDRF and undertaking balance works,” the letter further said.