By Express News Service

VIJAYAWADA: Taking stock of the damage caused by the heavy rains and floods in Krishna and Guntur districts, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Monday directed officials to finish estimating the extent of crop damage at the earliest. He told them to provide input subsidy to farmers so the money can be used as an investment for Rabi crops.

Jagan, along with Home Minister Mekathoti Sucharita and Civil Supplies Minister Kodali Sri Venkateswara Rao, conducted an aerial survey of the flood-hit regions of Krishna and Guntur districts. He also assessed the damage in Nandigama, Avanigadda, Penamaluru, Mylavaram and Tadikonda constituencies.The State government has been providing free ration and essential commodities in the flood-hit regions of Krishna, Guntur and Godavari districts. The Chief Minister told officials to identify people who lost crops, houses and cattle due to the floods in the remaining districts and compensate them immediately.

Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy 

Addressing the media in Kakinada, Minister for Agriculture Kurasala Kanna Babu said relief and rehabilitation measures are being undertaken in flood-affected areas of nine districts. Preliminary estimates reveal that agriculture crops on 1,07,797 hectares were damaged, he stated, and added that horticulture crops on 13,563 hectares and pisciculture on 2,974 hectares were damaged. As many as 478 boats belonging to fishermen were also damaged by the flood.

Stating that all departments are taking up damage-control exercises, the minister added that Yeleru Reservoir received 30 TMC feet of water and all irrigation drains originating from the reservoir were flooded, resulting in inundation of several colonies in Pithapuram, Jagammpeta, Prattipadu and Anaparthi segments. “As directed by the Chief Minister, essential commodities are being distributed as immediate relief,” he said.

Released Rs 125 crore input subsidy: Kannababu

Boats have been requisitioned to rescue the affected families, and mineral water is being given to them. The health department has been alerted to provide medicines free of cost, and village volunteers are working to help the victims, the minister said.Relief and health camps are being organised in the affected areas, and permanent measures are being undertaken to improve health and hygiene. In view of the IMD forecast of more rains, all officials have been told to take steps to mitigate problems, he added.Finding fault with TDP leader Nara Lokesh, who is camping in the district, Kannababu said there is no truth in what the TDP leader claims. 

“We released `125 crore input subsidy, and not `25 lakh, as Lokesh claims. Further, Rythu Bharosa was paid to all beneficiaries. In fact, our government cleared the pending dues of the TDP government,” he said, and dismissed Lokesh’s allegation that 750 farmers committed suicide.Advising Lokesh to learn facts first, the minister said lies would unnecessarily create fear among the public. He blamed TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu for the current crisis, and said that if the TDP completed the modernisation of Yeleru in the five years it was in power, the present crisis would not have taken place.

8 speed boats being sent to Hyd for rescue & relief
In response to a request from Telangana, CM Jagan told officials to send speed boats to Hyderabad to help in rescue and relief operations. Eight boats –  three from the disaster management dept and five from the tourism dept – are being sent, along with NDRF divers and life jackets

More thunderstorms over next four days, warns IMD
A low-pressure area is very likely to form over the central Bay of Bengal on Tuesday, and cause squally weather with winds of 45-55 kmph near the AP coast for the next four days. The IMD said  thunderstorms with lightning and heavy rain is likely at isolated places in AP in the next four days


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