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Odisha ministers visit five cyclone-hit districts


Reported by Ranjan Rath
Rayagada, Oct 16:

Acting on the directive of chief minister Naveen Patnaik, five ministers and chairmen of District Planning Boards today visited four south Odisha districts today to assess the extent of damage caused by the Cyclone Hudhud and oversee relief and restoration works.

Minister Puspendra. Singhdeo in an affected village in Nabrangpur
Minister Puspendra. Singhdeo in an affected village in Nabrangpur

While Energy minister Pranab Prakash Das visited Koraput district, four other ministers—Commerce and Transport minister Ramesh Majhi, Higher Education minister Pradip Panigrahi, Housing and Urban Development minister Pushpendra Singhdeo and Sports and Youth Affairs minister Sudam Marandi—visited Malkangiri, Rayagada, Nabarangpur and Gajapati districts respectively.

After his arrival at Nabarangpur, Singhdeo visited the affected areas of Papadahandi and Umerkote blocks. He also took a look at the vast patches of damaged maize fields.

Talking to reporters, the minister said he will have a review meeting tomorrow after visiting some blocks and submit the final report to the state government.

The Higher Education minister Pradip Panigrahi after visiting Therubali, Sandubadi, Kereda and Seshakhala areas in Rayagada district, had a review meeting later in the day in the presence of state Tribal Welfare minister Lal Bihari Himirika, Koraput MP Jhina Hikaka and all MLAs of the district.

Present at the meeting, Rayagada collector Sashibhusan Padhy said the extent of damage as per the preliminary estimate is to the tune of Rs 927 crore.

He also informed that while 53 village roads have been damaged, the approach road to bridges swept away by heavy rains has disrupted road communication between Rayagada and Andhra Pradesh.

He also said 121 transformers have also been damaged by the cyclone Hudhud.

It was decided that all repair and restoration works would be completed within a week.

The Commerce and Transport minister Ramesh Majhi during his visit to Malkangiri district, took stock of the extent of damage. He also visited Tekabadi and met the people whose houses were completed damaged in the cyclone.

The minister later had a review meeting.

The ministers will have a review meeting on relief assistance in these districts tomorrow.