A seven-member Central team visited several districts in Bihar to assess the damage caused byrecent floods, to provide assistance to the state. The inter-ministerial team headed by Joint Secretary inthe Ministry of Home Affairs Ajay Ramesh Sule left for Delhi today after two days of interaction with state officials and visit to several districts for on-the-spot study of the damage incurred in the floods.
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“The team appeared satisfied with the presentation madeby state officials about the extent of damage caused by floodsthis year,” Pratyay Amrit, Principal Secretary of Disaster Management and Power, told media.
The state government had in August submitted a memorandum to the Centre for Rs 4,111.98 crore flood assistance after Chief Minister Nitish Kumar met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on August 23.
The central team visited Bhagalpur, Munger, Samastipur, Arwal among others for on-the-spot assessment of damage, Amrit said. The visit came after Kumar questioned the Centre’s “attitude” in providing “timely assistance” for the damage caused by flood in the state this year.
In a letter to the Union Home Minister last Saturday, Kumar had questioned the “delay in the arrival” of the Central team and said after he met the Prime Minister and Singh, state officials were in “regular touch” with the Centre.
The state was informed that the Central team’s visit was postponed for November 10-11. But, through a letter on November 4, the Centre again informed about “putting off” the visit to November-end due to a meeting of Public Accounts Committee and commencement of the Winter Session of Parliament from November 16.
The Chief Minister had said farmers in the flood-affected areas have started sowing crops and have also begun repairing the houses. In such a condition, due to delayed visit, the Central team will face a practical problem in assessing the damage caused by floods.