The union government has said it stands with West Bengal in these testing times. It has assured the state of immediate advance assurance of Rs 1,000 crore. Prime Minister Narendra Modi made this assurance today as he wrapped up a quick visit to the state battered by Cyclone Amphan. This is the prime minister’s first outstation visit in nearly three months.
Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee received the prime minister at the airport at 10:50 AM. They accompanied him on the aerial survey of some of the worst-affected parts of the state before landing near a school in Basirhat, 50 km from the Kolkata airport.
“Rs 1,000 crore by (the) central government for immediate assistance of West Bengal in the wake of Cyclone Amphan. I assure my brothers and sisters of West Bengal that the entire country stands with you in these difficult times,” the prime minister tweeted after undertaking the aerial survey.
Announcing further relief for the injured, Modi said, “Rs 2 lakhs would be given to the next of kin of the persons deceased and Rs 50,000 each to the persons who got seriously injured due to Cyclone Amphan in parts of West Bengal.”
“A team will be sent by Central Govt to conduct a detailed survey about the damage caused due to Cyclone Amphan & the current situation of the affected areas. All aspects relating to rehabilitation & reconstruction will be addressed. We all want West Bengal to move ahead,” Prime Minister Modi said.
The prime minister and the chief minister are scheduled to hold a review meeting on the post-cyclone situation. “He will conduct an aerial survey and take part in review meetings, where aspects of relief and rehabilitation will be discussed,” the PMO said through a tweet last night.
Banerjee has demanded that the cyclone be declared as a national disaster.
At least 77 people were killed as Cyclone Amphan left a trail of destruction through six districts of West Bengal, including the state capital Kolkata in the night of 20 May, blowing away shanties, uprooting thousands of trees and swamping low-lying areas.