The Government of Andhra Pradesh has offered technical assistance for Kerala in improving the disaster management system and reconstruction of houses damaged in the floods.
Andhra Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Chinna Rajappa, who handles the Home and Disaster Management portfolios, held discussions with Kerala Ministers and senior officials here on Wednesday, and handed over a cheque for ₹35 crore as the State’s donation to the Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund for flood victims.
Later addressing the media, Mr. Rajappa said the government of AP was willing to assist Kerala in the post-flood reconstruction programme. He said he had offered to extend technical assistance to improve the State’s weather monitoring and early warning systems. Andhra Pradesh, he said, had developed a technology-assisted weather modelling and forecasting system which depended on inputs from the IMD as well as other agencies. The State also had an efficient nowcasting facility for rain and thunderstorm activity. The Real Time Governance unit in the Chief Minister’s Office was equipped to use the data to provide early warning for communities and coordinate emergency response including evacuation.
Mr. Rajappa said the shear wall technology extensively used in Andhra Pradesh for housing could be employed for reconstruction of flood- damaged houses in Kerala. “Though it involves a 25% increase in cost, the technology offers the advantages of better durability and faster completion of houses, factors that are critical for the reconstruction programme in Kerala,” said A.Babu, CEO, RTG who accompanied the Minister.
Mr. Rajappa said he had held discussions with the Kerala Cabinet sub-committee on using AP’s expertise in disaster management and housing for the benefit of flood victims in the state.
Besides the ₹35 crore given as relief assistance, the government of AP also offered relief material to the tune of ₹16 crore in the form of 2000 MT of rice and other essential commodities. The State had also sent five helicopters for the rescue of stranded flood victims and despatched personnel from the State Electricity Board, Fire department and State Disaster Response Force for relief activities.
Answering questions, he said the Central assistance of ₹600 crore for the State was too meagre. He also urged the Central Government to lift the curbs on accepting international assistance for relief activities in Kerala.
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