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Centre Accuses Kerala Of Not Spending Half Of Rs 3,000-Crore Flood Aid

Centre Accuses Kerala Of Not Spending Half Of Rs 3,000-Crore Flood Aid
The Kerala government has been at loggerheads with the centre over flood aid.
New Delhi: 

The centre has accused the Kerala government of not spending 50 per cent of the funds released for relief and rehabilitation purposes after the 2018 floods.

The Ministry of Home Affairs had released Rs 3,000 crore as relief in the aftermath of the floods, which claimed 488 lives and caused widespread devastation in the state. "Of the Rs 3,000 crore we released, they spent only 50 per cent," a senior official told NDTV.

The official said that although Kerala asked for an additional Rs 2,000 crore in funding, the centre would not give it in the absence of an utilisation certificate. "Funds amounting to Rs 3,048.39 crore was given to Kerala in December 2018 as relief for the floods that year. As of April 2019, the state government spent just Rs 900 crore and no utilisation certificates came for the remaining Rs 2,100 crore," he added.

The official said that the Kerala government spent some more funds from April to December-end, but it only came up to about half the sanctioned amount of Rs 3,048.39 crore.

Kerala had sought Rs 4,700 crore as compensation from the central government for damage caused due to the 2018 floods, which was termed as the worst this century. At least 488 people died in Kerala amid monsoon rains and floods, which hit 14 districts of the state in 2018.

According to the official, the centre did not take any decision on the state's request for the 2019 flood damage compensation because all the utilisation certificates for the first tranche of funds were yet to come in. "The Union government will release more funds only after receiving utilisation certificates for funds already given to Kerala," another official said.

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Kerala has been hit by the worst floods in a 100 years. The Kerala Government estimates Rs 21,000 crore will be needed to rebuild the state. The funds are required to rebuild hundreds of flooded villages, thousands of damaged and destroyed homes and 10,000 kilometres of ravaged roads.
 
This Onam as Kerala struggles to rebuild after the most devastating floods in a century, NDTV has organised a special telethon to raise funds for Kerala. We have specific goals - to enable the rebuilding of villages in the worst-affected districts and provide immediate assistance in terms of rehabilitation and food kits to people in the worst affected areas . All donations will go directly to our partner NGO Plan India.
 
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