Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Saturday deputed 11 ministers to personally visit the districts affected by cyclone 'Burevi' to coordinate rescue and relief operations and directed officials to do it on a war footing. He also announced a solatium of Rs 10 lakh each to the families of seven people who died in rain-related incidents brought on by the cyclone.
The Ministers overseeing the rescue and relief work are P Thangamani and M C Sampath in Cuddalore district, KP Anpalagan and R Kamaraj in Tiruvarur district, SP Velumani, OS Maniyan and Dr C Vijayabaskar in Nagapattinam district. KA Senkottaiyan and P Benjamin will supervise the work in Chengalpattu and Kanchipuram districts and D Jayakumar and K Pandiarajan will oversee the activities Chennai, the release said.
CM Palaniswami, who took stock of the situation even as the state continued to receive rains, particularly Cuddalore district, said 75 huts and eight tiled houses were fully damaged. A total of 1,725 huts and 410 tiled houses were partly damaged, he said. He announced compensation for those whose houses were damaged and also to cattle owners whose animals died. About 66 trees and 27 electric poles were uprooted in the cyclone.
The Chief Minister directed the Public Works Department (PWD) officials to keep a close watch on water bodies.
About 14 NDRF teams have been stationed in six districts to assist people.
Heavy rains under the influence of 'Burevi' lashed the state on December 3 and 4, particularly several southern districts. Cuddalore district bore the brunt and continued to receive rain on Saturday, inundating many places. Several families were evacuated from areas that faced a flood-like situation.
The district received an average of 79.06 mm during the 24-hour period ending 8.30 am on Saturday, officials said.
Crops in about 39,000 hectares have been submerged and the extent of crop loss would be known only after the water starts receding from the fields, they said.
Principal Secretary to Government (Agriculture) Gagandeep Singh Bedi told reporters that two types of compensation will be available to farmers whose crops had been damaged. Farmers who have not availed crop insurance will also be entitled to compensation from the Revenue Department through the State Disaster Relief Fund (SDRF) if the loss of crop was more than 33%, he said.
Cuddalore District Collector Chandra Sekhar Sakhamuri said the administration was in touch with NLC India Ltd to ensure that rainwater in the mines was bailed out slowly to prevent flooding in the surrounding villages.
Meanwhile, the inter-ministerial team, deputed by the Union government to make an on-the-spot assessment of the damage caused by cyclone 'Nivar' to Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, arrived in the state on Saturday. The team will visit the affected districts and wind up with a meeting with the Chief Minister before leaving for the national capital on December 8.