Flood-ravaged Kerala is to seek the approval of the Centre to raise more money from the market for a major rehabilitation package.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told media persons after a Cabinet meeting today that it would request the Centre to relax the norms and raise the borrowing limit to 4.5 per cent from 3 per cent of State Gross Domestic Product. This should help it raise Rs 10,500 crore.
Besides, the State would ask the Centre to allow it to impose a temporary 10 per cent cess to raise funds.
A special Assembly session was being convened on August 30.
The State would formulate and submit a comprehensive project on relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction to the Centre.
As part of building a ‘new Kerala’, the State planned to seek help from NABARD for special central projects in infrastructure development and agriculture.
Separately, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) promised to give Rs 700 crore toward flood relief to the State. Vijayan said he had informed the Prime Minister about the offer.
He said Lulu group promoter M A Yusuf Ali had apprised the UAE rulers about the flood situation.
Kerala and the UAE had a special relationship and that country was a second home to Keralites. There was Kerala touch in almost everything there he added.
In a tweet, UAE Vice-President Sheikh Mohammed said: "The state of Kerala in India is currently witnessing huge floods, the most devastating in a century. Hundreds have been killed, hundreds of thousands have been displaced. Ahead of Eid Al Adha, do not forget to extend a helping hand to our brothers in India."