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Flood toll goes up to 13

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GUWAHATI, Aug 23 - Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today made an aerial survey of flood- affected Lower Assam�s Kokrajhar, Chirang, Bongaigaon, Goalpara and Dhubri districts even as the death toll in the current deluge rose to 13.

Accompanied by Chief Secretary VK Pipersenia and other senior officials, which included Commissioner and Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management and CEO, Assam State Disaster Management Authority, PK Tiwari, Chief Minister Gogoi made an aerial survey of the worst-affected districts of Lower Assam on an Indian Air Force chopper.

Landing at Narengi Army helipad after almost two hours of aerial survey, Chief Minister Gogoi said the State Government has geared up rescue and relief operations in the flood- affected areas. Gogoi praised the NDRF and the SDRF for the all-out efforts in rescuing marooned people. The Chief Minister said the ministers and officials have fanned out to the affected areas and are monitoring the relief operations.

The Chief Minister said the Central Government is yet to release a sizeable chunk of funds sought by the State Government for infrastructure damages caused by floods last year. It has only released Rs 380 crore so far. �We have submitted memoranda to the Central Government, including the Prime Minister and Home Minister, but have not received the funds sought by us for huge infrastructure damage caused by floods last year,� he said.

Gogoi said there are no funds constraints in providing relief to the affected. �We have funds for relief work. What we require from the Central Government is sufficient funds for building up the infrastructure such as roads, bridges, school buildings, health centres, dwelling houses and embankments damaged by floods last year and proper rehabilitation of the flood-hit people,� he said.

It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Gogoi in a memorandum to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Guwahati on October 1 last year sought Rs 2,010 crore for damaged infrastructure, which included roads and bridges, dwelling houses, health centres and school buildings. It also demanded Rs 660 crore for rescue and relief operations. Besides, Rs 6,700 crore was sought as special assistance to the State, which included Rs 3,500 crore for raising and strengthening of embankments�and Rs 1,000 crore for mitigating flood problems in Guwahati city.

The Chief Minister said the first priority of the Government is providing relief to the flood-hit people and he has instructed the Deputy Commissioners of the affected districts to leave no stone unturned to extend all possible help to the affected, especially the children and women. �Restoration of surface communication and repairing of breached embankments have also been accorded priorities,� he said.

Gogoi said that the Government would prepare an assessment report highlighting the damages and rebuilding exercise only after the flood waters recede.

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Flood toll goes up to 13

GUWAHATI, Aug 23 - Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today made an aerial survey of flood- affected Lower Assam�s Kokrajhar, Chirang, Bongaigaon, Goalpara and Dhubri districts even as the death toll in the current deluge rose to 13.

Accompanied by Chief Secretary VK Pipersenia and other senior officials, which included Commissioner and Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management and CEO, Assam State Disaster Management Authority, PK Tiwari, Chief Minister Gogoi made an aerial survey of the worst-affected districts of Lower Assam on an Indian Air Force chopper.

Landing at Narengi Army helipad after almost two hours of aerial survey, Chief Minister Gogoi said the State Government has geared up rescue and relief operations in the flood- affected areas. Gogoi praised the NDRF and the SDRF for the all-out efforts in rescuing marooned people. The Chief Minister said the ministers and officials have fanned out to the affected areas and are monitoring the relief operations.

The Chief Minister said the Central Government is yet to release a sizeable chunk of funds sought by the State Government for infrastructure damages caused by floods last year. It has only released Rs 380 crore so far. �We have submitted memoranda to the Central Government, including the Prime Minister and Home Minister, but have not received the funds sought by us for huge infrastructure damage caused by floods last year,� he said.

Gogoi said there are no funds constraints in providing relief to the affected. �We have funds for relief work. What we require from the Central Government is sufficient funds for building up the infrastructure such as roads, bridges, school buildings, health centres, dwelling houses and embankments damaged by floods last year and proper rehabilitation of the flood-hit people,� he said.

It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Gogoi in a memorandum to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Guwahati on October 1 last year sought Rs 2,010 crore for damaged infrastructure, which included roads and bridges, dwelling houses, health centres and school buildings. It also demanded Rs 660 crore for rescue and relief operations. Besides, Rs 6,700 crore was sought as special assistance to the State, which included Rs 3,500 crore for raising and strengthening of embankments�and Rs 1,000 crore for mitigating flood problems in Guwahati city.

The Chief Minister said the first priority of the Government is providing relief to the flood-hit people and he has instructed the Deputy Commissioners of the affected districts to leave no stone unturned to extend all possible help to the affected, especially the children and women. �Restoration of surface communication and repairing of breached embankments have also been accorded priorities,� he said.

Gogoi said that the Government would prepare an assessment report highlighting the damages and rebuilding exercise only after the flood waters recede.

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