Centre approves Rs 1,269 crore assistance for crop damage to Maharashtra


Mumbai: The Centre approved an assistance of Rs 1,269 crore to Maharashtra for crop damaged due to drought. This was approved at a meeting of a high-level committee meeting for central assistance headed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

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The state government had sought Rs 2,000 crore as supplementary relief aid for losses in the kharifseason and Rs 1,200 crore for relief of farmers who suffered losses during the rabi season last year.

The demand was raised under the National Disaster Relief Fund, but Union home minister Rajnath Singh approved Rs 589.47 crore as supplementary assistance for damage to kharif crop and Rs 679.54 crore for damage to rabi crop.

The funds have been released on the basis of a report submitted by a central team, who had visited the drought-affected areas in May. The state sought the second package in May after 13,853 villages were added to the drought-affected list, taking the total to 29,610. In December 2015, the Centre had released Rs 3,050 crore grant after over 15,778 villages were declared drought affected. Then, the state had sought Rs 4,002 crore in central assistance.

“In our report, we try to show the exact situation, but there are restrictions of fund as the Centre has to cater to many states. We have got a sizable amount from the Centre, the rest will be given by the state from its own coffers,” said a senior official from the relief and rehabilitation department.

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