UP govt confirms 660 deaths from rains, flood

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Lucknow, Aug 21 (UNI) Uttar Pradesh government today admitted deaths of at least 660 people due to heavy rainfall and flood were reported so far in the state.

Replying to an adjournment motion in the Assembly, state Irrigation minister Nasimuddin Siddiqui said of the total 660 deaths, 90 people have died due to flood, 114 due to heavy rains and cloud burst, while the remaining fell prey to routine deaths in monsoon season.

However, the opposition Samajwadi Party and Congress staged a noisy walkout from the House, alleging that no relief work or compensation have been given to the affected families.

The minister maintaining that adequate relief work has been undertaken in all the affected districts, said that excess rainfall in some parts of the state had created havoc and several deaths were reported due to house and building collapse incidents.

Contradicting the opposition's charges about lack in relief and rescue operations, Mr Siddiqui said 268 relief camps and as many as 2,757 boats have been pressed into service in the affected areas.

Besides this, 36,416 houses were damaged in the rains and flood, of which 2,400 houses were totally destroyed, he added.

He said flood has affected 1.5 million people in 21 districts of the state having an impact in about 300 villages.

''During the last 12 hours, Varanasi recorded 292 mm rainfall, while Sitapur recorded over 300 mm in the last 36 hrs,'' he informed.

Raising the issue, the SP and Congress members alleged that the government had done nothing for the people reeling under the impact of excess rainfall in the state since June 9.

They also demanded adequate compensation for the affected families, including Indira Awas for the poor whose houses have been damaged.

UNI MB JAS SLD CS1650

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