Union Minister of State for Finance and Shipping, Shri. P. Radhakrishnan has said that the Centre would provide all necessary assistance to flood ravaged Kerala.
Inaugurating the State Level Bankers’ Committee meeting in Thiruvananthapuram yesterday , he said all public and private Insurance Companies have been instructed to quickly process and expedite settlement of all claims arising out of floods.
Shri. P. Radhakrishnan pointed out that with the allocation of Rs.214 crore during 2018-19 to Kerala, the state government has a total amount of Rs.562.45 crore in the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) under its disposal.
The Minister said further fund requirement will be decided after the submission of memorandum by the state.
Shri. P. Radhakrishnan said that as the banking services were severely hit by the floods immediate measures were taken by the Finance Ministry and nearly 191 bank branches and 179 ATMs were made functional.
Measures are being taken to make the remaining functional as early as possible. The Minister said to give relief to the people in this hour of crisis the government has waived off the charges for issuing duplicate passbook, deposit receipt and charges for not maintaining minimum balance and issuing fresh debit etc.
Soiled and defective notes will be exchanged at all bank branches. He pointed out that the government has also extended fresh consumption loan up to Rs. 10,000 on need basis and moratorium on agricultural and MSME loans for one year.
Later replying to queries from media, Shri. P. Radhakrishnan said the demand of Kerala for enhancing 3% to 4.5 % of GSDP will be looked into by the Central government.
He pointed out that under Prime Minister’s direction, the Centre has given all possible given all possible assistance to Kerala.
It has provided the necessary food grains and medicines. The Minister said the Centre is totally sympathetic to Kerala and the Prime Minister has asked, Ministries to consider various demands of the state.
Shri. Radhakrishnan said the Centre would provide more assistance after a fresh memorandum is submitted on the loss and damage caused by the deluge. The Kerala government has already informed that they are preparing a new report.
Based on that the Centre will send a team to study the situation before taking a decision, the Minister said.>