TN CM announces Rs 1,000 cr flood relief package for rain-hit districts

Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin on Saturday announced a Rs 1,000 crore relief package including housing facilities and loans for MSMEs and Self-Help Groups for the rain-ravaged districts in the state.

Following up on his assessment of the damage caused due to rain in Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts on December 21, the chief minister chaired a meeting with senior officials here today and discussed the help required by various sections affected by the unprecedented floods.

He directed the officials to repair partially damaged houses and rebuild completely damaged ones in Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi districts.

”The chief minister has ordered to provide Rs 4 lakh for fully damaged houses and upto Rs 2 lakh for partially damaged houses. The Rural Development Department will implement the scheme in Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu districts,” an official release here said.

Accordingly, 4,577 new houses will be constructed and 9,975 residences will be repaired at a total cost of Rs 385 crore. The entire expenditure will be borne by the state government. Guidelines for this scheme will be issued soon.

During his assessment of Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts battered by torrential rains on December 17 and 18, Stalin consoled the affected people and assured them to provide appropriate assistance.

He announced that Rs 250 crore would be provided as relief to farmers of eight districts who suffered losses for the crop damaged in 2.64 lakh hectares. These farmers will be accorded priority in extending crop loans and financial assistance for purchasing agricultural equipment through cooperative societies.

The silt deposited on the agricultural lands due to severe floods in Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts will be removed by the agriculture engineering wing free of cost and the land will be rendered cultivable.

Small traders and vendors in Chennai, Thoothukudi and Tirunelveli districts who suffered losses due to heavy rain would be provided special loans of Rs 10,000 at 4 per cent interest rate and upto Rs one lakh at 6 per cent interest rate. Guidelines for this will be issued soon.

MSMEs affected by floods in Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram, Chengalpattu, Tirunelveli, and Thoothukudi districts will be provided financial aid to meet expenditures such as working capital to revive industrial units.

”A Flood Relief Loan Scheme for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises will be launched by the Tamil Nadu Industrial Investment Corporation (TIIC) to provide financial support of Rs 100 crore to MSMEs at a special concessional interest rate of 6 per cent for a year,” the release said.

The loan could be repaid in 18 months with a grace period of three months. A total of 3,300 MSMEs will benefit from this gesture.

About Rs 350 crore loans for women SHGs in Chennai, Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi and Kanyakumari districts, apart the package also includes a compensation of Rs 15 crore towards the damage caused to 4,928 fishing vessels and machinery in Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi districts, compensation for loss of cattle, poultry, livestock, livelihood assistance to salt pan workers, issuing new certificates and textbooks besides documents, family ration cards, etc. for those lost in floods.