Kurseong June 10: A sum of Rs. 50,000 will be immediately sanctioned by the state government as grant for repair of damaged houses that had been struck by cyclone Aila on May 26. This was announced by Urban Development and Municipal Affairs Minister Ashoke Bhattacharya here today after a meeting held with the civic heads of four hill Municipalities along with the District Magistrate Surendra Gupta.
As per the assessment of the hill municipalities there are a total 225 houses which are totally damaged in the hills due to the cyclone. We have decided to grant a sum of Rs.50, 000 per house immediately through the civic bodies. The civic bodies will strictly monitor the repair and the utilization of the fund in a proper way, Bhattacharya told Journalist after the meeting at Inspection Bunglow.
Out of the 225 houses 26 houses fall in Kurseong, 20 houses in Mirik, 162 houses in Darjeeling and 17 houses in Kalimpong.
Along with the grant, the minister said that the meeting also decided that the municipalities will immediately clean the Jhoras and the drains in the municipal areas to avoid further landslides in the region. A special fund would be sanctioned for the cause as per the requirement of the municipalities, he said.
The water pipelines and the roads in the municipal areas are also in a pathetic condition and hence the minister said a minimum repair would also be done at the earliest along the strengthening of the walls with the help of Municipal Engineering directorate. However the Minister lamented that the civic building rules have not been followed in all the four hill municipalities.
It is urgently required that the building rules of the Municipal areas be followed. For this we have decided to hold a workshop in Kurseong very soon in which the four municipalities would be involved. The Kurseong Municipality Chairman Krishna Limbu has been given the responsibility to organize it. We will invite experts from Calcutta to deliver speeches on building rules and tell people through the workshop the hazardous impact of not following the rules, Bhattacharya said.
After the meeting the Minister visited the Kutlery area where the cyclone Aila had killed five people of the same family on May 26. Bhattacharya also visited Landslides areas in Mirik 35 km from here today.
Bhusan Chettri kurseong, DT correspondent, Kurseong