GUWAHATI, Sept 7 - Asserting that the Assam Government had enough funds at its disposal to tide over the present flood crisis, Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday said that a high-level team from the Union Water Resources Ministry will visit the State very soon to assess the havoc caused by floods and erosion.
Addressing mediapersons here, Sonowal regretted the State Government�s casual approach in tackling the flood situation and appealed to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi not to play politics at this hour of crisis.
�The Centre had released Rs 1,655 crore for the State in April this year. But surprisingly, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has been claiming that the State Government does not have enough funds to deal with the flood situation,� said Sonowal, mentioning that the State Government instead of utilising this fund for immediate rescue and relief of the flood-affected is blaming the Central Government.
Sonowal requested Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi to desist from politicising the flood crisis and play his role as per the norms laid down in the Constitution of the country.
�Prime Minister Narendra Modi has directed the BJP leaders to visit the flood and erosion-affected areas. At this hour of crisis, both the Centre and State Governments must work together and the State Government has a greater role under the prevailing situation,� said Sonowal, adding that the high-level Central team will assess the situation and chalk out a concrete road map to address the perennial problem of the State.
Sonowal further said that OIL, ONGC, NRL, IOC and BCPL will join in flood assistance and the modality will be finalised very soon.
On the other hand, MP Ramen Deka who was also present in the press conference slammed the Congress for its failure in taking up short and long-term measures to solve the flood and erosion problem. He also expressed doubt that the SDRF funds might have been diverted. �A white paper on release of central funds to the State Government and its utilisation will be brought out very soon,� Deka said.