Centre seeks report from hailstorm-hit states

New Delhi, March 14 (IANS) The government has sought reports from states about damage to crops following heavy rainfall and hailstorm in some parts of northern India, union Minister Radha Mohan Singh said on Monday.

“I have personally spoken to the agriculture ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan to assess the crop damage,” Singh informed the Lok Sabha in a statement on the issue.

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi had raised the issue on Monday and sought immediate relief for the affected farmers.

Singh said the states have conveyed that it will take three to four days to assess the crop damage.

“Central teams will visit the affected areas after receiving reports from the states and assistance will be provided on the basis of their reports,” he said.

The minister also announced that the government has decided to grant assistance to the union territories in case they are affected by disaster.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the setting up a disaster relief fund to grant assistance to the union territories like Delhi,” he said.

Singh also said there was no provision in the past to grant funds to union territories under the National Disaster Relief Fund.

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