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Lok Sabha voices concern over flood devastation

New Delhi: Members in the Lok Sabha today expressed grave concern over the devastation caused by floods in various parts of the country, including Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh, with most of them seeking financial assistance from the Centre to tackle the situation.

Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Ram Kishun (SP) said a serious situation has arisen in eastern Uttar Pradesh—from Allahabad to Ballia—as several rivers were in spate.

Flood hit. PTI

Flood hit. PTI

He sought special financial assistance from the Centre for 19 districts in the region saying standing crop there has been destroyed and thousands of flood-hit people were in dire straits.

Pratap Singh Bajwa (Congress) said crops in 4.5 lakh acres in several districts of Punjab, especially in the border areas, had been damaged by floods triggered by persistently heavy downpour and sought deployment of army and paramilitary forces to help in rescue and relief operations in the affected areas.

Amid interruptions from Akali Dal members, he said the state government had enough funds and should give compensation of Rs 25,000 per acre for the crop damaged.

As Bajwa spoke, all the four members of SAD, the ruling party in the state, were in the Well to counter Bajwa. They were pacified after Speaker Meira Kumar assured them that one of them would be allowed to speak.

Sher Singh Ghubaya (SAD) then accused the Congress-led government at the Centre of "not giving a single pie" to his party's government in Punjab to tackle the flood situation caused by the overflowing rivers like Sutlej and Beas.

Maintaining that the state government was distributing free foodgrains to the affected people, he said the Centre should provide compensation to them.

Ganesh Singh (BJP) drew the government's attention to the serious situation in parts of Madhya Pradesh following heavy rains and wanted a central team to be sent immediately to assess the situation and decide on financial assistance.

PTI