our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, March 27: Due to delay and lethargy on the part of district authorities to assess flood damage and the extent of suffering of the flood victims, and convey to Dispur the ground reality, the victims continue to suffer in the State. Now, however, the State government has taken up the matter seriously and is contemplating on steps to speed up work to alleviate their agonies.
During the cut-motion on the affairs of the State Revenue Department in the State Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, a section of MLAs asked why flood victims were not getting relief in certain areas.
In response, Revenue Minister Pallab Lochan Das said whenever flood hits the State, district authorities seek assessment from the grassroots level and send reports to the government, but the government has yet to receive the full assessment reports relating to last year’s flood. “The government is now planning to call a review meeting of district disaster magement authorities headed by respective DCs every month. I request all MLAs to be present at such meetings since you are members of such committees. The DCs will send us reports on the amount required for relief and rehabilitation so that we can immediately release funds. In many cases, reports pour in, but they are not in accordance with guidelines, which creates problems for us,” he said.
Adding that the Revenue Department would send a proposal to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) for revision of the existing compensation rates for flood victims, the minister said, “We render all kinds of help to the flood victims, such as for damaged and lost utensils and clothes, as well as to assist them on siltation issues. But we don’t receive reports from many districts as to the extent of the damage caused. So we are uble to provide assistance at the right time. We are also soon going to write to MHA for revision of the current compensation rates for flood victims.”
Das further said the government has already released the required amount for flood relief and rehabilitation to DCs in advance so that they can start work immediately without waiting for Dispur’s nod.