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Audit Body CAG Finds Fault In Kerala Government's Flood Management

Audit Body CAG Finds Fault In Kerala Government's Flood Management
Audit Body CAG Picks Holes In Kerala Government's Flood Management. (FILE)

The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has picked holes in the flood management of the Kerala government, saying the flood plains in the state are yet to be demarcated and the flood plain zoning law is yet to be enacted.

The authorities had failed to issue precautionary alerts or warning when the deluge had wreaked havoc in the southern state in 2018, it said in a latest report.

"The Kerala State Water Policy 2008 was not updated in accordance with the National Water Policy and lacked provisions for flood control and flood management in the state," the CAG said in the report titled "Preparedness and Response to floods in Kerala" which was tabled in the state Assembly on Thursday.

Pointing to lack of large scale flood hazard map in the southern state, the agency said the state's Disaster Management Plan includes flood susceptibility map not conforming to Central Water Commission (CWC) criteria for flood prone areas.

Only six rain gauges against the requirement of 32 were available for rainfall estimation in Periyar basin by IMA, it detailed.

The CAG also found that project for obtaining real time data on rainfall, stream-flow etc did not deliver reliable data on real time basis even after a lapse of five years.

"Communication infrastructure was non-functional in some areas including dam sites and government offices during or subsequent to the 2018 floods," it said.

Though 7112 works of immediate repair and restoration of damages in 2018 floods were approved for execution under the State Disaster Response Fund, 18 per cent of the works were yet to be completed even after a lapse of two years and eight months, the report added.

Meanwhile, the CAG's Finance audit report, also tabled in the Assembly, said that the state did not achieve any of the targets fixed in the Medium Term Fiscal Plan.

"The overall debt as a percentage of GSDP for 2019-20 increased from 31.05 per cent to 32.07 per cent," it added.

Revenue receipts of the state increased from Rs 69,033 crore in 2015-16 to 90,225 crore in 2019-20, recording a growth of 31 per cent during the last five years.

The CAG also continued to criticize the state government's off-budget borrowing through the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) and the Kerala Social Security Pension Limited.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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