23 die in storm & lightning in Assam

GUWAHATI, May 14: In the past few weeks, storm & lightning has had its toll as a disaster in Assam, with the loss of 23 human lives, including 10 in storm & 13 in lightning. This year, the disaster has affected 22,801 (approx) families in Assam’s 18 districts with the most affected districts being Golaghat, Sivasagar, Dhubri, Sonitpur and Cachar.

The State Government has directed all the Deputy Commissioners to release ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh to the next of kin of each deceased person within 48 hours. The Government has already delegated the financial power to the Deputy Commissioners of all districts for sanction of ex-gratia payments.

The DCs of the storm-affected districts were also directed to immediately take steps for assessment & reporting of the loss of property, so that the rehabilitation grant may be released for the fully/ severely damaged houses (pucca/ kutcha) @ Rs 95,100 in plain areas, Rs 1,01,900 in hilly areas and partially damaged  pucca houses @ Rs 5200, kutcha house- Rs 3200 & huts- Rs 4100 as per Govt of India norms.

The Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) has also taken steps for awareness on do’s and don’ts in storm & lightning scenario through electronic media. The respective District Disaster Management Authorities (DDMAs) have taken steps for trimming trees to avoid casualties. The State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) personnel are well equipped to clear roads whenever falling of trees disrupts road communication after a severe storm. The Government is on alert and in state of preparedness to take care of all emergencies in this regard, according to an official release here today.