GUWAHATI, Sept 4 - The State Government today alleged that the Central Government has not released any amount against the State Disaster Response Funds (SDRF) since May last to mitigate the impact of the severe floods that have been wreaking havoc in the State. The Central Government had released an amount of only Rs 207 crore to the State as the first instalment of the current year�s Central allocation of Rs 414 crore under the SDRF, said the State Government in a statement here today.
The statement of the State Government came in reaction to the assertion made by Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal recently that the Centre has released an amount of Rs 207 crore to the State for flood relief operations.
The State Government said that after the first instalment of the SDRF released in May 2015, no funds either under the SDRF or the Special Package have been released to the State Government till now to mitigate the impact of the severe floods in Assam during the current financial year.
It said that the SDRF is a fund constituted in 2005 under Section 48(1) (a) of the Disaster Management Act wherein the Central Government is required to provide funds in two instalments to every State as per the recommendations of the Finance Commission for dealing with various natural calamities, irrespective of whether such calamities occur during the year or not.
Accordingly, it said the 14th Finance Commission has recommended an award of Rs 414 crore for Assam for 2015-16 as the Central share. This fund under the SDRF has not only been released to Assam, but also to all the 26 States of the country. A sum of Rs 207 crore received by Assam in May this year is merely the first instalment of the Central share of the SDRF receivable by the State along with all other States in normal course. This amount is the entitlement of the State as per the provision of the Act and is not any additional special assistance from the Central Government.
In addition to the SDRF, the Disaster Management Act has provided for special Central assistance to any State through a separate fund called the National Disaster Response Funds (NDRF) to deal with situations arising from various natural calamities. The Central Government has not sanctioned any special funds under the NDRF to Assam for the current year�s floods. In fact, the State is yet to receive the special Central assistance under the NDRF for the devastating floods that occurred in Assam during last year.