Centre sanctions Rs 918 cr assistance for floods

Bhubaneswar: The Centre today sanctioned Rs 918.30 crore as flood assistance to the state besides agreeing to bear the expenses incurred towards air-dropping of food materials during relief operations in the state, official sources said.

"We have received a letter from the Centre confirming sanction of Rs 908.30 crore from National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) and Rs 10 crore from National Rural Drinking Water Scheme," Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) P K Mohapatra told reporters.

Stating that the state government had sought an assistance of Rs 3,265 crore from the Centre for relief, rescue and restoration activities in the flood affected districts, the SRC said that at least 21 of the 30 districts of the state were affected in the calamity.

"The centre has also agreed to bear the expenses of air-dropping of food materials. At least 82 sorties were made during the relief operation the cost of which could be Rs 3.1 crore," the SRC said adding that the total assistance towards flood would be around Rs 921.40 crore.

The state had witnessed two spells of floods due to depression induced heavy rainfall at upper catchment areas of river Mahanadi, Brahmani, Baitarani and other major rivers of the state in the first week of September and middle of that month.

Besides a large number of live stocks, at least 87 persons were killed in the calamity and a large number of houses were damaged in the twin floods.