Aila must be declared national disaster: Left Front

June 9th, 2009 - 5:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, June 9 (IANS) West Bengal’s ruling Left Front (LF) Tuesday said the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government should declare cyclone Aila, that hit parts of West Bengal coasts May 25, as a national disaster, considering the gravity of the damage it caused in Sundarban Islands.
“We’re demanding that the Aila damages be declared as a national disaster and seek the centre’s help to carry out rescue operations in the cyclone-hit Sundarbans area,” state LF chairman Biman Bose told a press conference here.

He said: “The centre has already sent a team to monitors the situation. The observers are touring extensively in and around the mangrove-forested islands. Now they are taking an aerial view of the situation and will return to the capital this (Tuesday) evening.

“The expert team will file a report June 10 on the basis of their observations.”

The LF Tuesday reviewed the post-Aila situation in the mangrove region. Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee also placed a detailed report explaining how the relief operations are being undertaken in the worst-hit islands.

“We’ve asked all our LF MPS and state legislators to contribute some amount from their area development funds to reconstruct the damaged embankments.

“We also demand concrete embankments to be built in Sundarbans as has been done in neighbouring Bangladesh and all Scandinavian nations,” Bose said, adding that state LF will donate cash to the chief minister’s relief fund Wednesday to provide relief to the homeless residents of Sundarbans.

Welcoming Congress’ gesture in attending the all-party meeting Sunday (June 7), the state LF chairman said: “They’ve shown their responsibility as a national party by attending the meeting.”

Bose urged people to rise above political affiliations and work for the cyclone-ravaged population in the Sundarbans.

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