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Why can't you grant amount equivalent to Sardar Statue for Kerala flood rehab? Medha Patkar asks Modi

Medha Patkar addressing a gathering Kerala
Counterview Desk
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Kerala floods following her visit to the affected areas, top social activist Medha Patkar has wondered as to why is there shirking of responsibility on the part of his government and hesitation to declare it as a national disaster.

Text of the letter:

Who doesn't know about the heavy rainfall as well as formidable flooding in Kerala, resulted out of water released from number of dams? It is a natural calamity faced by this small yet bountiful state following Tsunami and Ockhi type of cyclone.
On seeking information from all our colleagues in the field we have confirmed that till date water have not receded from all areas and at places where people who are struck, there is dearth of transportation such as helicopters and others for rescuing the people and for ensuring that the materials reach the dam affected families and communities.
Whatever we had experienced during Kosi floods of Bihar is likely to be repeated in Kerala as well. However Kerala is a small state and country is large enough to take care. It should be a priority, therefore to bring together vehicles and all kinds of transportation at national level for the state of Kerala.
The sensitivity and empathy needed for this huge task should be aroused, while the same seems to be lacking as witnessed not only by people of Kerala but across the country. It was also noticed and realized from our meetings and dialogue with the Ockhi cyclone-affected fish workers that Minister for Defence Nirmala Sitharaman had not taken prompt and proper steps for bringing military and lift t and save their life.
Will the same insensitivity be shown this time too in the case of Kerala? Will the members of your cabinet including water resource minister, finance minister, defence minister will take this issue with utmost urgency? You, Mr Prime Minister, know when a small state like Kerala faces such a big calamity; will you require any proof to understand the gravity of the situation? Vinash ka Darshan in the exhibit of development?
The citizens of this country fail to understand as to why is there shirking the responsibility on the part of your government and hesitation to declare it as a national disaster. After having been compelled to release water from 35 dams not only the property destroyed in the flood but the livelihood, natural resources, the main source, will have to be regenerated without wasting time. The state government has requested all Rs 8000 crore when the losses are huge and much higher.
Why give them just a relief fund of about Rs 500 crore? After all when in Kerala an extravagant infrastructure projects including the dams on the rivers are pushed and the nature has caused a formidable impact as the reversal, the budget for some upcoming large projects is certainly going to be saved. Your government therefore certainly has the capacity to fulfill the requisition of the state government. But is there a will, May we ask?
You, Mr Prime Minister, sir, is to be tested on both the issues of national disaster and the funds to be granted by the central government. If you cannot even grant or gift the amount equivalent to the huge amount being spent on Sardar Patel statue, then the common people will certainly watch and weigh. Sardar Patel also will mourn in his coffins, no doubt.
Please do think and respond.

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