Thiruvananthapuram: The state cabinet on Tuesday decided to submit a comprehensive scheme to Centre for relief, rehabilitation and the reconstruction of infrastructure facilities following devastating floods.
Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the scheme aimed not at bringing the state back to its earlier position, but building a new Kerala.
Massive resource mobilisation is needed for the reconstruction of the state. It will urge the Centre to increase the borrowing limit.
The existing limit is three per cent of the GSDP. The demand is to raise it to 4.5 per cent.
If the limit is raised, the state will be able to mobilise an additional Rs 10,500 crore from the open market.
The state will urge NABARD to sanction special schemes both long term and short term for rebuilding infrastructure, agriculture, irrigation and associated sectors.
A special package is also needed for centrally sponsored schemes and Rs 2,600 crore special package for MGNREGA.
The state government had declared a moratorium on loans taken from commercial and cooperative banks in flood-affected areas.
However, many people had taken loans from private lenders, who are reportedly sending staff to the camps threatening people and forcing them to pay dues. The chief minister said this would not be permitted.
Special lottery for rebuilding the state The state will soon launch a special lottery for rebuilding the flood-ravaged districts. As part of additional resource mobilisation, the state will request the GST council to permit it to levy a 10 per cent cess on state GST. State Disaster Management Authority certificates will be issued to fishermen who rescued a large number of people from flood-affected areas. Besides, army, navy, air force, coast guard, NDRF, CRPF, BSF personnel who took part in the rescue operations would also be honoured at a function on April 29. SDMA certificates will be issued to police, fire force, revenue and local bodies’ staff who took part in the rescue operations.
All plantation workers in the state would be given 15 kg free ration given the flood havoc. It will give Rs 7 lakh for treatment of Akhila, 24, who sustained grievous injuries in the landslide in Alvusserri in Palakkad district. Posting Dr A. Jayathilak, who returned from central deputation, has been posted as principal secretary – sports and youth affairs.