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Rs.17 crore for drought-affected areas

THIRUVANATHAPURAM: The Cabinet on Wednesday allotted Rs.17 crore to rush relief to areas facing drought-like situation.

Briefing the media on the Cabinet decisions, Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan said the Cabinet, after discussions, had authorised the Chief Secretary and District Collectors to take necessary steps to rush relief to areas facing shortage of drinking water.

The Cabinet decided to direct local self-government institutions to take steps to improve sanitation so as to prevent the spread of diseases such as chikungunea and dengue.

State to go in appeal

The Cabinet also decided to go in appeal against the observations of the High Court, made on Tuesday, about the breakdown of law and order in the State. The Chief Minister said the court had made the observations against government the without hearing its side. He pointed out that surveys by the media and the Central government had reported that the law and order situation in the State was the best in the country.

(The Kerala High Court had on Tuesday observed that law and order in the State was in a shambles and that the police hade become a fearful and dreaded force whom the common man shudders to beseech for help.)

Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had on Tuesday said that the State government would go in appeal against the court observations after studying it.

IAS Officer Indrajit Singh, returning after long leave of absence, would be posted as Finance Secretary.

On ties with JD(S)

Mr. Achuthanandan said he regretted the Communist Party of India (Marxist)’s failure to arrive at an understanding with the Janata Dal (Secular) on seat-sharing. The JD(S) had links with the Left for long. The alliance had begun from the time of the Socialist party in the seventies. (The JD(S) had on Sunday decided to campaign against the LDF in the Lok Sabha elections while remaining in the ruling front.)

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