Kerala gets zero flood relief from Centre, Rs 5,908cr for seven other states

New Delhi: Giving credence to the allegations that the Central Government was extending a step-motherly treatment to Kerala, the state has been denied aid for the damage and destruction caused during the floods of 2019.

The Centre on Monday approved the release of Rs 5,908.56 crore to seven other states, including Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Assam, as assistance for the damage caused due to various calamities last year.

Kerala, which had witnessed a massive catastrophe during the rains last year, had sought Rs 2,101 crore from the Centre. A letter to this effect was sent to the Centre on September 7.

Even after the massive floods of 2018, Kerala had not been sanctioned appropriate aid by the Centre. It was then alleged that the Union Government was engaged in politicking even amid a tragedy and the latest announcement only supports this charge.

The Home Ministry, in a statement, said the decision was taken at a meeting of a high-level committee (HLC), chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

The HLC approved additional central assistance of Rs 5908.56 crore to seven states from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) of which Rs 616.63 crore will be given to Assam, Rs 284.93 crore to Himachal Pradesh, Rs 1869.85 crore to Karnataka, Rs 1749.73 crore to Madhya Pradesh, Rs 956.93 crore to Maharashtra, Rs 63.32 to Tripura and Rs 367.17 crore to Uttar Pradesh for floods or landslides or cloudburst during the 2019 southwest monsoon, the statement said.

Earlier, the central government has released an interim financial assistance of Rs 3,200 crore to four states -- Rs 1,200 crore to Karnataka, Rs 1,000 crore to Madhya Pradesh, Rs 600 crore to Maharashtra and Rs 400 crore to Bihar.

During 2019-20, the government has released Rs 8,068.33 crore to 27 states as central share from the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).

The central government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been providing full support to states by providing timely logistics and financial resources to supplement efforts of the state governments to deal with the situation effectively in the wake of natural calamities, the statement said.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman was present in the meeting, along with senior officers of the ministries of Home Affairs, Finance, Agriculture and NITI Aayog.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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