The Maharashtra Congress will set up teams to tour drought-affected areas of the state from May 12-20, the party's state unit chief Ashok Chavan said Friday. He also led a delegation to Governor C Vidyasagar Rao asking him to intervene and direct the Devendra Fadnavis government to take immediate drought relief measures.
Speaking to reporters after a meeting of party leaders earlier in the day, Chavan said the Congress had taken stock of the drought situation and had come to the conclusion that mismanagement on the part of the BJP-led state government was causing hardships to people. Chavan said drought was declared in October last year and claimed the state's preparations, which were good on paper, failed to take off.
"During the Lok Sabha polls, the state government completely neglected drought-affected areas. There was no hurdle of election code of conduct for drought relief. The chief minister declared drought on time, but did not take subsequent measures to provide relief to the people," Chavan charged. "Drought was declared in 28,524 villages in October last year. But, the government completely ignored them during the election period," he alleged.
"The PM had said due to Jalyukt Shivar, more than 16,000 villages were drought free. Then what is this drought? Out of the 1.33 crore animals in the state, only 9 lakh have been taken care of," he claimed. Meanwhile, a Congress party delegation apprised Governor Rao of the hardships caused to the people by the drought.
Chavan said the delegation discussed issues of migration from drought-hit areas, unemployment due to lack of EGS (Employment Guarantee Scheme) works, adding that the party had demanded that district collectors be given adequate funds to start drought relief measures. He said the Congress has demanded financial assistance of Rs 50,000 per hectare for agriculture and Rs one lakh per hectare for horticulture.
Farmers should also be given financial aid to buy seeds and urea, and there should be a restructuring of crop loans, he said. Chavan said educational fees for students should be waived off.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)