Thursday, Jan 06, 2005
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By Our Staff Reporter
NAGAPATTINAM, JAN. 5. Tsunami has caused extensive damage in the coastal areas of Nagapattinam district, A.K. Srivastav, Joint Secretary, Union Home Ministry, who leads a six-member Central team, has said.
Talking to mediapersons here this evening, Mr. Srivastav said he would submit to the Centre a report on the quantum of relief on Friday. "We will hold discussions with the State Government before submitting the report," he said.
Over 6,000 persons died in the district and fishermen lost boats and nets, besides other property.
To a question, Mr. Srivastav said: "It is too early to quantify the relief. The district administration presented a memorandum to us about the damage caused."
The other team members are Ajay Bhattacharya, Joint Secretary, Animal Husbandry; O.P. Shemar, Director, Ministry of Finance; K. Mazumdar, Deputy Adviser, Department of Water Supply; Jayachandran, Superintending Engineer, Ministry of Surface Transport; and V.K. Arora, Additional Director-General, Ministry of Health.
The team went to the coastal areas of Aryanattutheru and Keechankuppam, Velankanni, Seruthur, Siladi Dargah in Nagore, Tarangampadi and Karaikal. It visited a relief centre at a marriage hall in the heart of Nagapattinam town.
R. Santhanam, Special Commissioner and Commissioner for Revenue Administration; Shantha Sheela Nair, Secretary, Rural Development and Local Administration; Vivek Harinarain, Secretary, Information Technology; J. Radhakrishnan, Thanjavur Collector, M. Veera Shanmugha Moni, Nagapattinam Collector, and some senior IAS officers, including M.P. Nirmala, Supriya Sahu, S.K. Prabhakar, Dr. Rajaram and H. Makwana apprised the team of the relief operations, sanitation, co-ordination with the NGOs and the Army's work.
Families of fishermen told the team that they needed new boats, nets and houses in a protected area and financial assistance for starting fishing activity.
The team also visited T.R. Pattinam in Karaikal in the Union Territory of Pondicherry.
At Velankanni, Devadoss Ambrose, Bishop of Thanjavur and Fr. Xavier, Rector and Parish Priest of Shrine Basilica of Our Lady of Health, told the team that the tsunami claimed hundreds of lives and caused extensive damage to shops in the church area.
The members heard the people's grievances in the coastal areas and assured them that the Government would do its best for their rehabilitation.
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