Rains in State flood House

74 lives lost; 1,465 houses damaged; Rs 2,020 crore help sought

Rains in State flood House

The Opposition charged him of not utilising the Central grant of Rs 127 crore for relief works which is with deputy commissioners.

Making a suo motu statement on the rains the minister said 74 people have died in June and July due to the rains, floods and lightning. In June, the total deaths were 57 - 51 from lightning and six due to the rains/floods. From June to this day, 17 people have died - One from lightning and 16 due to the floods/rains. As many as 1,465 houses have been damaged and 306 animals have died, he added.

Emergency relief works

Reddy said 11 districts have received excess rains and the DCs have been directed to take up emergency relief works in Uttar Kannada, Udupi, Dakshina Kannada, Kodagu, Shimoga and Chikmagalur districts. A special assistance of Rs 5 crore has been released for these districts. For the rest, Rs 1 crore to Rs 2 crore will be released. He alleged that the Centre did not respond positively to the State’s request for an assistance of Rs 2,019.55 crore for relief works in the drought-hit places in 2008-09.

Outdated norms

Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah said, neither Reddy nor the district in-charge ministers have bothered to visit the rain-hit areas. Compensation to the affected people and family members of the deceased are given as per the outdated norms. Instead of giving just Rs 1 lakh to the family of the deceased, at least Rs 5 lakh should be given, he said.

Displaying a reply given by an under secretary of the Revenue Department, Siddaramaiah said the Centre had released Rs 288.65 crore to the State in 2008-09 for calamity relief works. Of this, Rs 127.34 crore have not been utilised by the deputy commissioners. “Why are you misleading the House by saying that the Centre has not released money?” he said. But he agreed with the minister that the State needs more fund.

Reddy in his reply, said funds released by the Centre was not in proportion to the demand.

Later, Ramanath Rai and U T Khader (Cong), Yogish Bhat (BJP) - all from the coastal districts, and C T Ravi, Belur Gopalakrishna (BJP) and H K Kumaraswamy (JD-S) elaborated on the hardships faced by the people due to the rains. Kumaraswamy said 400 electric poles have been uprooted in Alur of Hassan while Yogish Bhat said that travelling to Manglaore has become tough with Shiradi Ghat being closed, and the train services being cancelled. A 13-year-old girl died at a government school in Puttur as cup-board fell on her due to gusty winds. He demanded that the Government pay compensation to her family members.

Rs 5 crore for 5 districts

The State Cabinet has decided to release Rs 5 crore for works in the five flood-affected districts: Kodagu, Uttara Kannada, Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Shimoga.

The Cabinet also reviewed the flood situation in the State.  Sources said, the chief minister is likely to inspect flood-hit areas in Kodagu and Mangalore districts using Army helicopter on Sunday.

Session snippets

Deemed varsities

M C Nanaiah (JD-S) in the Council on Friday urged the Government to regulate deemed universities and seek legal recourse to formulate common admission rules.

Medical Education Minister Ramachandra Gowda said the State has no control over deemed universities and the Centre has authority to grant the status. However, the State had added a rider by directing to reserve 25 pc of seats to local students. Higher Education Minister Aravind Limbavali said, in the Higher Education ministers’ conference convened by the Centre he and his Maharashtra counterpart raised apprehensions over increasing number of deemed universities.

High price for power

Energy Minister Eshwarappa in the Council defended the price at which the State government purchased power from Chhattisgarh.

The State had purchased 356.4 MU and paid Rs 6.34 per unit in Feb and Rs 9.05 per unit in March and April.

Govt mulls over one CET

Minister Aravind Limbavali said the government was contemplating one CET from the next academic year.

Replying to a question by M C Nanaiah (JD-S) he said  it was torture for the students who take up both the tests. However, he agreed as per the consensual agreement filed before the Supreme Court there was no opportunity for a common test for both government and private professional colleges.

Nanaiah said among the rank holders in the Comed-K test the first 100 students were non-Karnataka students. The colleges were interested only in making money.

SSA: Transfer of officials

The Council chairman directed the government to transfer Mysore DDPI and district Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan co-ordinator till the departmental inquiry into alleged misuse of funds under SSA was completed. Following a dharna by JD(S) members demanding suspension of DDPI Nagendra Kumar and SSA co-ordinator M R Shivaram, Chairman Veeranna Mathikatti told the government hold an inquiry and convey the findings to the House before of the on-going session ends.

9,000 posts vacant

The total number of posts vacant in government first colleges and universities in the state for teaching and non-teaching staff exceeds 9,000.

According to the statistics disclosed by Minister Arvind Limbavali in the Council the vacancies in the first grade colleges stood at a staggering 5,789 posts while the vacant posts at universities in the state was 3,298.

Mysore University has the highest number of vacancies for teaching staff with 526 vacancies while Karnatak University has 764 vacant  posts. BU is second with 285 vacancies for teaching posts. VHD Institute of Home Science and Government Science College in Bangalore 33 and 32 posts vacant respectively. In his reply to JD(U) MLC M P Nadagouda, Limbavali said, out of the 5,789 posts vacant at colleges, 3056 were recruited.

There was a stay against issuing the appointment order to 2,560 people who were recruited and the government is awaiting judgment from the KAT.

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