Puducherry | Heavy rains pounded Puducherry overnight after a short relief with state agencies finding it tough to carry out rescue operations. Residents of the union territory had got relief for a while yesterday when there was some let up in the downpour but it started raining heavily again last night. Official sources said Puducherry and its suburbs recorded 9.1 cm rainfall in the last 24 hours ending 8.30 a.m.today.
Total rainfall recorded in Puducherry since the beginning of this week has crossed 60 cms, the sources said. Though hindered by the rains, Department of Revenue and Disaster Management, led by District Collector D. Manikandan, has been intensifying its steps to provide relief to the rain-affected people and also those at the relief camps.
Several organisations like the Puducherry Heritage Round Table 167 have also been carrying out relief operations such as distribution of food packets. In the wake of the torrential rains, the Puducherry government had declared holiday for all educational institutions in the UT till this weekend.
The Pondicherry University has also put off all examinations scheduled to be held during this week at its departments and affiliated colleges. Fresh dates would be announced soon, university’s Assistant Registrar K. Mahesh said. Lt Governor A K Singh reviewed the situation and held several meetings with officials to discuss rescue operations and steps being taken to prevent an outbreak of diseases.
On Friday after announcing a relief package of Rs 150 crore, Chief Minister N. Rangasamy had told reporters, The rain havoc should be an eye opener to locate the man-made reasons for devastation. Departments should plug the loopholes in maintenance of the storm water canals.
Meanwhile, opposition Congress, led by PCC president A Namassivayam, has presented a memorandum to Lt Governor in which it has expressed its disappointment over the failure of adequate relief works. Former Union minister V. Narayanasamy was among those who met the Lt Governor and presented the memorandum.
The Congress wants waiver in farm loans in view of the havoc, Narayanasamy said. He said that he would meet the Prime Minister, Home Minister and Agriculture Minister and would pitch for a grant of Rs 200 crore to Puducherry immediately.
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