Ministers should get involved in rehabilitation work: Chandy

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Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 1 (IANS) Senior Congress leader Oommen Chandy on Saturday wrote to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to ensure that the proposed trip of state ministers to raise funds from abroad is postponed for now – and they instead lead the rehabilitation programme in the wake of the flood disaster in the state.

The disaster has claimed 483 lives and the destruction estimated at greater than the state’s annual outlay of Rs 37,000 crorre. At the height of the floods, the worst to hit the state in a century, there were 14.50 lakh people in more than 3,000 relief camps.

“Today, the most important thing that has to be done is to see that the rehabilitation of the more than one million people who were affected by the floods is done quickly,” Chandy said.

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“For that, every state minister has to take the lead to ensure that people get drinking water, clean up the homes, locality and very critical health requirements and hence the so called planned visits to abroad for fund collection should be postponed,” the former Kerala Chief Minister added.

On Friday, Vijayan announced there will be a fund collection drive led by the ministers in 14 countries which will be used for rebuilding the state.

“Now, it has come to light that the announced Rs 10,000 cash relief will not be given to every family. This is not right as the sufferings of the people just cannot be equated to mere losses,” the former Chief Minister said.

“Also, so many families have lost household and electronic appliances , that also should be compensated. Free ration is yet to be given to the victims and it should be provided to all for at least a month,” he said.

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Chandy also asked Vijayan to see that a portion of the small and medium traders who had stocked supplies loss, be compensated and the state government should see that they are given liberal loans.



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