MP has not yet got a penny from Centre in flood aid: Minister

Bhopal, Nov 18 (PTI) Madhya Pradesh Finance MinisterTarun Bhanot on Monday said the Congress-ruled state has notyet received any central assistance for losses suffered inrecent floods and heavy rains.

On the other hand, Bihar and Karnataka, who have alsosuffered rain-related losses during the monsoon, are being'favoured' by the BJP-led government at the Centre inproviding financial assistance, he alleged.

The BJP is in power either on its own or in alliancein Bihar and Karnataka.

'We sustained more losses than Bihar and Karnataka dueto flood and heavy rainfall during the monsoon. The centralgovernment has provided financial assistance to Bihar andKarnataka, but it has not given a single penny to us tillnow,' Bhanot told PTI.

'This is very unfortunate. The Centre should treat allthe states equally instead of favouring Bihar and Karnataka,'the Congress minister said.

'Central survey teams have already visited MP twotimes to assess the damage caused by floods. But no help hascome to us yet. The winter has set in now, but we are stillwaiting for financial help, Bhanot added.

He said Chief Minister Kamal Nath had also taken upthe matter with the Centre.

'We have sought a financial assistance of more than Rs1,100 crore. Kamal Nathji had met Prime Minister Narendra Modiand Home Minister Amit Shah for flood assistance, he said.

Kamal Nathji is trying hard to get the Centre'sassistance. It is hard to make up the losses caused by thefloods. Sourcing money is not an easy task.

'After the Goods and Services Tax (GST) came intoforce, we have no other means left (to generate revenue),'Bhanot said.

He said the Centre should immediately provide succourto flood victims in the state, where the BJP was in power for15 years (2003-2018), and release funds to carry out repairsof damage caused to infrastructure assets.

The central government should care for the people ofMP. The BJP won 28 of the 29 parliamentary seats in MP wherethe Congress came to power only last year after 15 years ofthe BJP rule, he said.

'Our officials are continuously writing to the Centrefor financial help. We are following up the case. The CM sahebis trying his best.

'It will be good if our efforts bear fruit otherwisewe will have to take some other course, Bhanot said withoutdisclosing the government's next action plan.

Another minister, P C Sharma, also claimed on Mondayevening that the state is yet to receive any central aid forflood victims.

'We have not received any central assistance yet,'said the PublicRelations Minister, who is also state cabinetspokesman.

Last month, Public Works Minister Sajjan Singh Vermahad slammed the Centre of not giving funds to repair roads andbridges damaged by heavy rainfall during the monsoon.

He had said the Union government was discriminatingagainst non-BJP ruled states.

'We demanded Rs 1,188 crore from the Centre to repairroads, culverts and bridges from the National DisasterResponse Fund (NDRF). The Centre has not given a penny sofar,' Verma had claimed. PTI LAL MASRSY RSY