Kolhapur, Aug 8 : The state government will declare a national calamity in the western Maharashtra region, including Kolhapur, Sangli and Satara, where the flood situation is very severe, at the appropriate time, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said here on Thursday.
Mr Fadnavis, who arrived this morning to take stock of the flood situation in the region, made these remarks, while addressing a news conference this evening here, after an aerial survey of the flood-ravaged areas.
He further said the Central government was monitoring the situation in flood-hit areas and informed that both Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh have assured of all necessary help to the state.
Considering the grim flood situation in Kolhapur and Sangli, teams of emergency services like the National Disaster Rescue Force (NDRF), SDRF teams from Orissa, Punjab, Goa and other states, along with Navy personnel, were engaged in rescue operations on a war footing, he said and pointed out that total 11 teams were currently working in rescue operations.
Also, additional NDRF and Navy teams have also arrived with additional boats for rescue efforts, he said. Besides the deployment of more boats for the rescue operations, he said if needed, they would airlift people marooned in these areas.
The Chief Minister further said that in Kolhapur district, total 223 villages were affected, of which 18 were totally cut off, due to floods.
The government would give preference for giving financial help to those, whose houses and crops were submerged by flood waters, he said.
Efforts were on to restore electricity supply to about two lakh consumers, which was totally suspended due to heavy rainfall in the past few days, he informed and said the government would try to supply medicines by air to flood-affected areas.
The Chief Minister also said that he had spoken to his Karnataka counterpart B S Yediyurappa, who has agreed to release 5,00,000 cusecs water from Almatti Dam, which will bring relief to waterlogged Sangli.
Talking about the Thursday's boat capsize incident, Mr Fadnavis said the boat tragedy at Bramhnal in Palus tehsil of Sangli district occurred, after a tree branch, which was carried away by the strong currents of the rain-swollen Krishna river, barged into the boat's engine.(UNI)