Central teams to tour rain-ravaged parts of Himachal

New Delhi, June 30 (IANS) The central government will send a high-level team to assess the damage caused by the recent torrential rains and flash floods, mainly in Kinnaur district, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh said here Sunday.

“Officials from various ministries and departments, besides banking representatives, would assess the damage caused by floods and assist the state in rehabilitation programmes,” the chief minister told reporters after meeting union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde.

He said the central government has promised to provide funding under centrally-sponsored schemes.

Virbhadra Singh said experts in disaster management would assist the state in carrying out preventive programmes.

He said the development process in the state had suffered a serious setback due to the natural calamity, and it would take more than one year to bring the state back on track.

The chief minister said all the tourists from the disaster-hit Kinnaur district have been evacuated. Ninety percent of apple crop in the district has been destroyed, he said.

Official sources said Virbhadra Singh Friday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here and sought financial relief of Rs.1,000 crore for relief and restoration work.

The chief minister said the loss of private and public property in the unprecedented rains was estimated at Rs.2,575 crore.

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