Bengaluru, Aug 10, 2020: The floods and torrential rains over the past few days have killed 12 people and caused a loss of Rs 3,500-4,000 crore to Karnataka, Revenue Minister R Ashoka said on Monday.
Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s video conference regarding the flood situation in several parts of the country, R Ashoka said, “According to preliminary estimates by our officials, the loss may be of Rs 3,500 to 4,000 crore. This is not final. Crops have been damaged on about 80,000 acres so far.”
On Monday, Ashoka along with Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai attended the video conference chaired by PM Modi, since Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa was undergoing treatment for COVID in a private hospital. “At least 12 districts have been affected by floods. A dozen persons have lost their lives in the state and thousands of homes and acres of crops damaged. We will seek financial assistance from the Centre for the rehabilitation and to rebuild the infrastructure,” he added.
According to R Ashoka, the state government has received Rs 310 crore in the last six months for precautionary measures under disaster management. “This won’t be enough. We need to provide compensation for crop losses and build new homes for people who will be shifted from landslide-prone areas,” Ashoka said.
Siddaramaiah urges state to ensure proper financial assistance from Centre
Karnataka Opposition leader and former chief minister Siddaramaiah on Monday said that the state government should ask the Centre for proper financial assistance regarding the rain and flood damages in Karnataka.
Siddaramaiah welcomed Modi’s move of calling a meeting to discuss flood issues with ministers of Karnataka government.
Last year, the CM had estimated damages due to floods at Rs 50,000 crore. He had requested the PM for Rs 35,000 crore, but what Karnataka got was just Rs 1,860 crore. Let the ministers be brave enough to ask for the remaining compensation as well,” he said in a tweet.
“Last year, the CM had reported to the PM about only the damages that happened in August. He had not reported about the damages in September-October. The ministers should apprise the prime minister about that as well and ask for higher compensation,” Siddaramaih added.
Several parts of the state, especially Malnad, coastal and interior Karnataka have been receiving heavy rain in the last one week, causing floods and landslides, which has affected lives and properties in the state.
Red alert in seven districts by KSNDMC, Kodagu priest still missing, brother’s body found
The Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC) has issued a red alert in seven districts of rain-ravaged Karnataka.
The red alert has been issued in Dakshina Kannada, Kodagu, Udupi, Uttara Kannada, Hassan, Chikkamagaluru and Shivamogga. According to the Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre, there would be heavy rain for the next 24 hours in coastal areas, in the northern and in the interior parts of the south.
Meanwhile, the body of Swami Anandatheertha(76), one of the five people missing in the landslide at Talacauvery in Kodagu district, was found by the disaster response team on Saturday afternoon. On Wednesday night, a massive landslide swept away two houses belonging to the temple priest.
According to the district administration, the body was found 600 metres away from the house. National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), Rapid Response Team and the District Police, are still searching for four more people who are missing.
On Wednesday night, a massive landslide near the Talacauvery temple swept away two houses belonging to the temple priest. Five people residing in the house, including the chief priest of Talacauvery temple, Narayana Achar (70), his wife Shantha (70), brother Ananda Theertha Swami (87) and two assistants, Ravi Kiran (26) and Srinivas (30), are missing.
In Kodagu, at least 52 areas have been affected by floods and 14 areas scarred by landslides, district minister V Somanna said.
The floods in Kodagu have affected over 52 places, including 18 in Madikeri taluk and 14 in Virajpet taluk. Sixteen places in the district have been hit by landslides, including Kadagadaalu, Jodupaala, Neerukolli, Kottamudi, Hodavaada, Abyaala and Dechooru in Madikeri taluk, Athoorunallooru, Thaakeri, Soorlabbi, Madapura and Shanthalli in Somwarpet taluk and Maggula in Virajpet taluk.
Somanna said, “Due to heavy rain, the district has reported 16 landslides so far and flood-like situations in over 52 places. Rescue operations are still on and as of now, over 578 people have been rescued. Over 649 people of 243 families have been rehabilitated in nine rehab centres, which have been set up in different places of the district.”
According to the district administration, as many as 1,800 electric poles have been hampered and 257 trees uprooted across the district. As many as 60 per cent of the mobile towers are not functioning.
DK Shivakumar seeks Rs 10,000 crore package for Kodagu
Meanwhile, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president D K Shivakumar visited the landslide spot in the Talacauvery on Sunday and inspected the rescue operation and spoke to local residents.
Speaking to reporters, Shivakumar said that the Kodagu district has been receiving heavy rain from the past three years, and he also urged the government to announce a special package of Rs 10,000 crore to find a permanent solution.