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Posted at: Aug 21, 2019, 7:37 PM; last updated: Aug 22, 2019, 6:42 AM (IST)

Punjab CM writes to PM for Rs 1000 crore special flood relief package

Punjab CM writes to PM for Rs 1000 crore special flood relief package
Army jawans and NDRF teams during a rescue operation at flood hit area in Gidarpindi village in Jalandhar. Tribune photo: Malkiat Singh

Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, August 21

Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Wednesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking a Rs 1000 crore special package to address the losses due to flooding in the state.

The chief minister has also urged Prime Minister Modi to instruct the concerned authorities to waive off crop loans of banks and financial institutions availed by the affected farmers during the current cropping season.

The flooding in river Sutlej due to the discharge of water from Bhakra Dam, the heaviest since 1958, had caused extensive damage to the standing crops and inundation of residential areas in the villages, the chief minister said, adding that an early estimate suggested the damage to be to the extent of Rs 1700 crore.

The state government had declared it a natural calamity in the affected areas, said the chief minister.

He said though necessary assistance was given by the Army authorities, the floods in river Sutlej had severely damaged standing crops, houses and other rural and urban infrastructure at many places, especially in the districts of Ropar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Kapurthala covering over 100 villages.

The chief minister said he had instructed the concerned officers of the state government to prepare the required memorandum for special package for consideration of Government of India in due course.

The request from the chief minister came amid reports that 326 villages across the state had been adversely impacted, with loss of standing crops on nearly 1.20 lakh acres of area submerged under water.

Services of the Army, the NDRF and the SDRF had been pressed, especially in the worst affected areas of Jalandhar and Ferozepur district.

According to the spokesperson, with rescue and relief operations on war footing, 5023 people had so far been rescued from the affected villages.

More than 36,000 ‘paranthas’ and 18,000 packets of dry ration along with water bottles had been air dropped for the residents of all the 18 affected villages of Jalandhar with the help of the Indian Army.

The relief packets were transported to Jalandhar Cantonment earlier in the day and were then loaded on to six Army helicopters under the supervision of Deputy Commissioner and Senior Superintendent of Police.

In Ferozepur alone, 368 persons were rescued by the jawans of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and Indian Army during a special rescue operation.

In Ludhiana, the administration successfully averted a possible breach in Mattewada complex around village Ghadi Fazil, while more than 60 persons had been evacuated from the five affected villages of the district.

In Kapurthala district, more than 200 persons had been rescued in 62 villages in the Sultanpur Lodhi area.

In Ropar, 86 multi-purpose health workers, 111 ANM nurses along with 40 fully equipped medical vans had been pressed into service to conduct special health camps for flood-affected persons and provide them necessary medical care.

As many as 10 relief centres had also been set up to rehabilitate the displaced families.

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