Declare Tamil Nadu a drought state: DMK

| Updated: Dec 19, 2016 13:32 IST

Chennai [India], Dec. 19 (ANI): As Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Paneerselvam will be meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi today to seek relief for damages caused by Cyclone Vardah, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has urged him to press the Prime Minister to declare it a drought state. "Apart from demanding money from the government for damages caused due to Vardah, the chief minister should also take up the farmers' issue. They should press the Government of India to declare the whole state a drought state and all farmers should be compensated, otherwise suicides would not stop," DMK leader T.K.S. Elangovan told ANI. Elangovan said Cyclone Vardah had affected only three districts of Tamil Nadu, whereas farmers of the state are suffering from scarcity of water. He asked Paneerselvam to seek Rs. 10,000 crore, instead of Rs. 1000 crore, as compensation under the National Disaster Response Fund to take up rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts in the state. On Sunday, an official release said that the chief minister will hand over a memorandum to Prime Minister Modi seeking assistance for the damages caused due to the severe storm. Chennai and the neighbouring Tiruvallur and Kancheepuram suffered heavy damages due to the cyclone that occurred on December 12. More than 1000 trees were uprooted and the city lost power supply after the collapse of electricity poles. Panneerselvam will also present a letter to the Prime Minister recommending 'Bharat Ratna' award to late chief minister J Jayalalithaa. He will further urge the Centre to take steps for installing a life size bronze statue of the former AIADMK chief in parliament. (ANI)