Kolkata: A 10-member delegation from the Centre today assessed the damage caused by the recent floods in various districts of West Bengal.
"We are here to assess the extent of damage as reported to the Centre by the state government. We will try to reach out to maximum affected areas during our two-day stay here. Only then we could finalise our assessment," Joint Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Rakhee Gupta Bhandari, who is leading the delegation told reporters after a meeting with senior officials of the state government.
"We will submit the assessment report to the Centre when we return to Delhi," Bhandari said.
On behalf of the state government, the meeting was attended by secretaries and senior officials of various departments. The delegation also met State Chief Secretary Sanjay Mitra.
Meanwhile, State Agriculture Minister Purnendu Bose said the state Disaster Management department has already released Rs 500 crore to help affected farmers.
"Another Rs 500 crore would soon be released to us by the Disaster Management department," Bose said adding that he had demanded a total of Rs 1,631 crore for his department.
"We can't wait for an indefinite period for Central aid. So we have to spent from our small resources," Bose said.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had last month met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and sought Rs 21,000 crore flood relief package for undertaking rehabilitation and reconstruction work in the state's 12 flood-hit districts. The flood claimed 132 lives in the state.