Nisarga cyclone victims in Raigad still awaiting help:Fadnavis

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Mumbai, May 19 (PTI) Senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday alleged the Maharashtra government has not yet paid the compensation for the damage caused to properties by cyclone 'Nisarga' last year in the coastal Raigad district.

For the second year in a row, the Raigad district neighbouring Mumbai was battered by a cyclone when cyclonic storm 'Tauktae' caused damage in many areas.

'I spoke to Raigad district collector and visited some places. I came to know that the MVA government has not paid the compensatory amount to Raigad residents who lost their property or houses during the 'Nisarga' cyclone that had hit in June last year,' the Leader of Opposition in the state Legislative Assembly told reporters.

He said the state government should distribute the pending financial assistance at the earliest.

Before making landfall in Gujarat late Monday night, cyclonic storm Tauktae, which passed close to the Maharashtra coast, battered many areas in the state, particularly in the coastal region.

'Some 4 to 5 districts in Maharashtra are largely affected by cyclone Tauktae, which means there won't be a huge financial burden on the state coffers (in offering financial assistance to the affected people). The government should address issues of farmers and offer some relief,' the former chief minister said.

Referring to his meeting with the Raigad district collector, Fadnavis said, 'I am told that some 8,000 to 10,000 houses are damaged while horticultural plantation over 5,000 hectares is also severely damaged in the cyclone'.

He said some 200 school buildings are reportedly damaged while 25 medical infrastructure buildings are also affected due to the cyclone.

Fadnavis said the power supply to some 600 villages in the district is also affected.

'The power supply to some 70,000 people from another 172 villages is yet to be restored. Some 300 HT (high tension) sub-stations are also affected, due to which the power restoration has become a major challenge,' he said.

Fadnavis said the state government needs to step up its efforts and ensure that the people get the necessary support and financial aid.

The last year's compensation of Rs 50 to Rs 100 per plant should be given at the earliest, he demanded. PTI ND NSK NSK