CM H.D. Kumaraswamy surveys Kodagu by air

Madikeri: Even as rescue and relief operations gained momentum in Kodagu district on Saturday, Chief Minister (CM) H.D. Kumaraswamy (HDK) conducted an aerial survey of Kodagu district and took stock of the situation. The CM flew in an IAF helicopter from HAL Airport in Bengaluru for the aerial survey of flood-ravaged Kodagu district and landed at Periyapatna, from where he travelled to Madikeri by Road.

Later speaking to press persons at Madikeri Kumaraswamy said 950 personnel from multiple agencies have been deployed for relief works. Over 350 people have been rescued and multiple agencies have pressed every rescue related machinery into service, he said.

Expressing his gratitude to Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for agreeing to deploy additional personnel for rescue operations, HDK said teams steered by Army Personnel had already reached Mukkodlu Village in Kodagu, where many people were stranded.

Pointing out that over 2,000 displaced people have taken shelter in 31 rehabilitation centres, the CM said more gruel centres will be opened to instil confidence among the people in distress.

Stating that officials have been directed to supply uninterrupted has petrol and diesel in distress areas and to install mobile towers, he said steps have been taken to deploy medical and nursing staff and for supply of food for children.

Continuing, the CM said over 50 excavators have been pressed into service to clear landslide debris, which has blocked Highways and arterial roads. Also, over 800 houses have collapsed due to heavy rains and people have lost their property documents. The departments concerned have been directed to provide copies of their documents at the earliest and officials have been asked to release Rs. 2 lakh compensation for those who lost their houses, he further said.

Announcing Rs.5 lakh compensation to the kin of those who died due to floods, the CM assured financial assistance to those who lost houses for rebuilding houses.

Reassuring the flood affected people of all assistance, Kumaraswamy appealed the general public to contribute generously to the CM’s relief fund. Earlier, the CM visited a relief camp at Maithri Hall in Madikeri where he assured the people of providing homes and  rehabilitating them.

The CM cancelled his scheduled visit to Chikkamagaluru and Shivamogga on Sunday and will visit Kodagu district again on Sunday to oversee rescue and relief operations.

As the helicopter used by the CM had to be pressed into rescue mission, the CM decided to stay in Mysuru on Saturday night and visit Kodagu again in Sunday morning.

Union Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda, who also visited rain affected areas on Saturday, said he had never seen such a disaster. Pointing out that over 40 Villages have been washed away and the damage is unimaginable, the Union Minister assured of all support from the Centre.

Meanwhile, Kodagu Deputy Commissioner (DC) P.I. Sreevidya rubbished social media rumours about Harangi Dam developing a back and an earthquake in the district, as baseless.

The Meteorological Department has predicted isolated spells of heavy rainfall across the district.

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