Karnataka CM estimates Kodagu rain damage at Rs 2,000-3,000 crore

Kodagu has been the worst affected among Karnataka’s 30 districts, recording 237% excess rainfall in the past week and 46% this monsoon.

india Updated: Aug 20, 2018 21:04 IST
Vikram Gopal
Vikram Gopal
Bengaluru
Karnataka CM,Kodagu rain,Kodagu rain damage
Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy cited available information to state that 845 houses had been completed destroyed, 743 partially wrecked, 143 km of roads washed away and 57 bridges damaged.(Burhaan Kinu/HT Photo)

Initial estimates peg rain-related damage caused to infrastructure in Karnataka’s Kodagu district at Rs 2,000-3,000 crore, chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said on Monday.

Addressing a press conference in the state capital, Kumaraswamy said the government was taking steps to provide relief to those affected. “Kodagu is witnessing heavy rain after a long time. In the past week alone, seven people have died in the district,” Kumaraswamy said. “Heavy-intensity rain was witnessed in the district from August 13, and this caused many roads to cave in.”

Data provided by the Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC) shows that Kodagu has been the worst affected among Karnataka’s 30 districts, recording 237% excess rainfall in the past week and 46% this monsoon. The district received an average of 535 mm rainfall against the normal of 159 mm over this period.

The chief minister said that while a final assessment of losses is yet to be done, it was evident that the state would require approximately Rs 2,000-3,000 crore to rebuild the infrastructure alone. “The President and Prime Minister are already in touch with me, and I will meet them once I have a proper estimate of the damage suffered in the district,” he added.

Kumaraswamy cited available information to state that 845 houses had been completed destroyed, 743 partially wrecked, 143 km of roads washed away and 57 bridges damaged. “As many as 32 relief camps have been set up in Kodagu district, and around 6,000 people are living there,” he said. “The state government has decided to give Rs 3,800 to every family housed in these camps, so they can buy basic necessities. This is exclusive of the 10 kg of rice, one kg of sugar, one litre of palm oil, one kg of tur dal and five litres of kerosene that we have provided to them.”

The chief minister also released details of a bank account opened for online donations, and assured donors that it would be 100% tax exempt.

As many as 1,725 officials of the district administration, police, reserve police, armed forces and civil defence personnel have already been deployed in the district, he said. “M17 helicopters from the Air Force are also undertaking rescue operations in the area in a coordinated manner.”

Kumaraswamy then asked officials to provide jobs to rain-affected labourers under the Mahatma Gandhi Rural Employment Generation Act, so they can help rebuild essential infrastructure and be gainfully employed at the same time.

District in-charge minister Sa Ra Mahesh said there was no more need for food items to be sent as relief material because the administration already had adequate reserves. “Perishables are not required at present because we are unable to store them. However, people can still contribute non-perishable items and monetary aid for reconstruction of homes,” he added.

KSNDMC scientist Sunil Gavaskar said the intensity of the downpour has already reduced, and heavy rainfall is not expected in the immediate future.

First Published: Aug 20, 2018 21:03 IST