Bhubaneswar: The Congress Monday accused the Odisha government of "not taking adequate precautionary measures" to tackle the twin disaster of cyclone Titli and the subsequent flood.
All India Congress Committee (AICC) Odisha in-charge Jitendra Singh told reporters in Bhubaneswar that the casualty figure was "much higher" than the state government's official death toll of 61.
"Odisha government's craziness for zero casualty publicity has led to such a huge human casualty in the very severe cyclonic storm Titli. Naveen Patnaik administration
is solely responsible for this," he said.
Singh, who visited the calamity affected areas of Gajapati, Ganjam and Rayagada districts along with a party team during the day, claimed that more than 70 people died due to 'Titli' and flash flood, but Odisha government has put the death toll at 61.
Accusing the state government of having "failed" to tackle the disaster, the Congress leader claimed had it taken the IMD warning seriously and organised cautionary operation well in time, the lives of all the deceased could have been saved.
"The state government has also failed to carry out relief and restoration work in the affected areas in a proper manner as most of the villages hit by the calamity are still
devoid of road links and electricity and drinking water supply even 12 days after the disaster," said Singh.
The former union minister alleged that the focus of the entire administration after the cyclone and floods was on Ganjam district which happens to be chief minister's home district.
The Congress leader demanded that the BJP-led NDA government at Centre provide a special package for cyclone and flood hit Odisha.
"We appeal to the Centre to provide a special package of assistance for the people affected by the recent cyclone Titli and subsequent floods," he said asking Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan to use his influence on the Centre to ensure a package at the earliest.
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Updated Date: Oct 23, 2018 00:04:43 IST