<b>XIII LOK SABHA DEBATES, <i> Session II (Winter Session) </i> </b>
XIII LOK SABHA DEBATES, Session II (Winter Session) Monday, November 29, 1999/Agrahayana 2, 1921 (Saka )

Title: Discussion regarding loss of life and property due to super cyclone in Orissa and the need to declare it as a National calamity.

MR. DEPUTY-SPEAKER: Now we shall take up discussion under rule 193.

ʴ |Eɶ ɨ (JҮ) : xxҪ ={vI ɽn, V E +V nx E |lɨ nɺ {ɮ , ɮ ɦ xxҪ n E ɴx l, = ʴɹɪ {ɮ x E ʱB +{x Z ɴ|lɨ +ɺɮ n , <E ʱB vxɴn*

< iɤn E +xi Vɺ ɽxiɨ SFi, ɤɺ JiɮxE SFi, x ʽxnֺix E =cҺ |xi E ʽ] E =ɨ ɦ M Vxi + V +Jɤɮ iɪ V MɦM BE Ec +vE VxɺJ v-v |ɦʴi < + +x-+ʶɪɱ E E J +nʨɪ E {i xɽ * =ɨ 10 Vɮ +vE i < * V Vx-vx E x < ɽ ɽi {E * =E ɮ ɽ ɪx xɽ E V Ei* Ex ɤɺ ɽi{h i ɽ E V ɨp E Exɮ E +`-x Vɱ , pE, VV{֮, ɱɺ, Exp{c, E]E, Jq, {ɮn{, VMiʺƽ{֮ + {֮ Vɱ ɤɺ Vn |ɦʴi B + =xE {hi: xɶ + , ʱE ɽ E VB E ɽ ɴxɶ + , i E< +iɶɪEi xɽ M*

ɤ M =xE ʴxɶ E ұ +Jɤɮ {gi * ɮ ɽx֦i + ƴnxB =xE l , Ex V P]x P], iڡx +ɪ, =E n E ʺli ɤɺ ʴSj * M x nJ E ɮ ʽxnֺix V P]xB P]i , Sɽ E{ E P]x , Sɽ SFi , =E n E ʺli c ɪɴɽ Vi * + MVɮi {U nx BE B P]x P] + iڡx E Eɮh {E Vx-vx E x <* = |Eɮ =cҺ Eɡ {E SFi +ɪ* ɤɺ M Ex ɪE i ɽ V ɮ VV xxbV x EU nx {ɽ ɪx n l VɺE +xֺɮ 400 Mƴ B Vɽ iE ɽɪi xɽ {ɽS* ɮEɮ ɶxɮ ɽɪi E ʱB {ɽS xɽ E* ɤɺ ɽi{h i ɽ E +V ɮ V |ɶɺxE ɴɺl , ɽ {ɮI E E] {ɮ E V + =E ɨx ɽ ɤɺ c Sxi +< Vɺ = {ڮ Ex *

V E ɦ +Jɤɮ E vɨ Vxi + V ɮ < =cҺ |xi +i ɽں Ei E < |Eɮ E V SFi V P]xF P]i , =E n Vɺ |Eɮ E ɽx֦i + ƴnx E +ɴɶEi i , ɽ xɽ ʨɱ {i *

Z Mi E ɮ {ڮ n x = <x]ʺ] xɽ E Vɺɨ Ex SʽB l* ɱE |ɶɺxE ʴɡi ɨx * ɽ +Mi Eɪ Mɪ E ɽ {ɮ ɨO ɮ < * ʴn ɽɪi +< + ɮ ʽxnֺix < x ɽɪi V Ex V |ɶɺxE ɶxɮ , ɽ +V E iɮJ iE Eֶɱ ʤi xɽ < * V P]xF P] + =E V <{E] ɨV E >{ɮ, Vxi E >{ɮ {c , =xE iEҡ E nڮ Ex ɽɪE ʺr xɽ B * ɱE |ɪɺ B * x E< ɮ ].. {ɮ nJ + +Jɤɮ {g E ɮEɮ x +{x iɮ ɽɪi {ɽSx E |ɪɺ E Ex nںɮ iɮ +Jɤɮ V xE , "<b ]b" MVx xE , nںɮ +Jɤɮ xE E ɽ SFi |ɦʴi M E ɱi ɽi Jɮɤ * =xE ɱi Miɮ ɮ ɨx + * ɤɺ ֮ ʺli ɽ E < SFi E n ɽ V +VEi E ʺli ɨx +ɪ , ]{] E E ɨx +ɪ , xɨx E E ɨx +ɪ , =ɺ ɮ-ɮ ɽ ɽں i E ɮ V ɤɺ ʮɪɤɱ |ɶɺxE |hɱ x Vi , +V =E V {ɮƺ , Mi , Iɨi , = {ɮ {xʴSɮ Ex E +ɴɶEi * B Vix P]xɪ i Sɽ E{ , SFi ʽ{i , =x ɤE Ex ɮ ɶ xɽ * ɽ V S B M , =xE |i ɮ + |ɶɺx E V xVʮ , =ɺ ɽi EU ʤi i * V E ɮ-ɮ E V E ɽi B Mƴ V ]] Ji Mɪ + ɽi B Mƴ Vɽ {ɮ |ɶʺxE ɶxɮ {ɽS xɽ E * B ɱi xxҪ |vx j il Mɽ j V E vx < iɮ JSx Sɽi E = V E +n r iɮ {ɮ ʴɶ |ɪɺ E Vx E +ɴɶEi * ɱE ɽ xɪ V M< il ɽi |i ɱ]ɺ Mɪ Ex <ix ɨɪ i Vx E n +V V ʺli ɨx + , V il ɨx + , =ɺ ɽ {i Sɱi E E< +x ɱ ɨ ɨɪ iE SFi E nֹ{ʮhɨ Zx {cM*

BE i + Ex Sɽi E + EU nx {ɽ x SFi nJ, c< nJ* =E {ɽ MVɮi SFi E |E{ nJ, E< P]xɪ nJ* =x {ɮ Vɺ iɮ ʽxnֺix ɨV + Vxi E |iFɪ ʨɱi , =ɺ Mi E b ɨV E +n ɽ ƴnxɪ =ɮ xɽ E , ɽ ɴxɪ xɽ {n E E Vɺɺ nڮ-nV E M <ɺ +Ui * ɱE x ɽں E E Vɤ ɮ ɽ nɱ x< V l i ɮ EU l B l, V ɽ ɽں E l E ʽxnֺix x ɽi c E Z <ʱB ɽx֦i Ei Ex SʽB Ex =E ɴVn x nJ E Sɮ iɮ ɽi c =iɴ l* ɱE ɴxɪ EiMi i Ex BE ɹ] + ɮ ɴxɪ ɤE Z * Vɽ {ɮ ɮ J < nJ + iEҡ Z ɽ M Mɽ ɽx֦i =ɮ {x xEɨɪɤ + =E |iɡ ɽ E V ʮҡ E Sɱ =ɨ EU nEEi + *

V E ɦ Vxi E 300-350 E] |i P] E iɮ ɽ SFi +ɪ l Vɺx ɤ EU xɶ E n* ɽ BE Ex, {c, Jɨ il E< ɽɮ iE xɽ S * +V xɴxɨh E Vɨnɮ ɮ ɮEɮ {ɮ * ɮ BE Ec E Vxi V v-v |ɦʴi , =E |iI {xɴǺ E Vɨnɮ ɮ ɮEɮ {ɮ *

ɽ ɽi c Vɨnɮ , ɽi c Sxi * ɽʤn E i E + ɮ ɮEɮ E ɨx <ix c Sxi + M< Vɺ ɽi E ɨɪ + ɽi BʶB] BSҴ Ex *

Z +ɶ E ɮ ɦ l, ʽxnֺix E ɦ xMʮE < < +ɺɮ {ɮ MƦҮi {xʴSɮ EM + BE B ɽ E xɨh EM Vɺɨ B ɴɺl E xɨh E E iE +x ɱ ɨɪ Vɤ E< B P]xF P], Sɽ |EiE nP]x , Sɽ c nP]x , ɤ ʨɱE +{x |ɦʴi <-ɽx, Vɤڮ M E nn E E* xxҪ |vxɨj V +x֮v , =xx <bEx n + < ɹ]Ҫ Eʨ] Pʹi E , ɮEɮ +xֶƺ E BE xxɱ Eʨ] b E Sx E Vɺɺ c {E xEx E ɨɪ ɮ |xiҪ ɮEɮ EU ` Eɪ E E* =cҺ ɮEɮ x n Vɮ Ec {ɪ E ʮEɪɮ] J * Vxi E ɽ ɽi c Eɪ , ɽi c Sxi * Vɤ ɽ SV ɨx + SE E ɮ-ɮ |EiE nP]x+ E ɨx Ex {c * B +ɺɮ {ɮ ʴɶ { Eʨ] b E l{x Ex SʽB Vɺɺ ɽ c inn V |ɦʴi M , Vxi E =xE ɨ ɨɪ iE <ɺ |ɦʴi x , =xE ʱB ʴɶ ɴɺlB E E*

SHRI TRILOCHAN KANUNGO (JAGATSINGHPUR): Mr. Deputy-Speaker Sir, even after five weeks of century's worst disaster, our people are remaining under the open sky in the season of shivering winter. At the moment when I am speaking here thousands of people are dying of cold and pneumonia and their number may multiply.

Sir, before I go into the details of the disaster and my suggestions to combat disaster and for the restoration and reconstruction, I want to place on record, on behalf of the affected people of Orissa, our deep gratitude to Shri Chandrababu Naidu and his team of Andhra Pradesh who came as saviours. We also place on record our gratitude to our Prime Minister who came to us at the time of our greatest distress and devastation.

I want to tell you that 14 out of 30 districts of Orissa, with 15 million of people have been totally devastated. Not only that, standing crops in 20 lakh hectares of the agriculturally richest area of Orissa have been completely damaged by this super cyclone, flood and saline-inundation. What worried us at this time is that we did not find the Government at the State level working with a mind to help the people, with a heart to serve the people and mitigate their miseries.

We did not find any dynamism and leadership with the Orissa Government. The Ministers did not go out of their chambers or their residences in Bhubaneshwar, whereas Shri Chandrababu Naidu and his team came from Andhra to help us; of course, the Army went there. Under such circumstances, I am perplexed and I am at a loss to understand how this reconstruction process will take place or how the restoration will take place. Even after five weeks or a month, people do not have a cover over their heads. They are spending their time under the open sky in this shivering winter. Lakhs of people do not have access to safe drinking water. Thousands of cases of diarrhoea are being reported and hundreds of people have died; their number will soon multiply if this impasse is not over. If the State Government does not act, if the State Government with its inept handling of the relief operations is allowed to continue further, then thousands of people would die. It is the responsibility of the whole country and it is the responsibility of this august House of the largest democracy of the world to save the people of Orissa from a very inefficient and corrupt Government.

SHRI ANIL BASU (ARAMBAGH): Now, you are politicising it.

SHRI TRILOCHAN KANUNGO : I am not politicising it. I am bringing the facts before this august House.

I have a few suggestions to make. We have a relief code in Orissa. According to this, an adult will be given 500 grams of rice and a child will be given 250 grams of rice as an emergent relief per day. But I can vouch that not a single person anywhere in the affected regions of Orissa has received this amount of emergent relief, that is, 500 grams of rice to the adult and 250 grams of rice to the child for fifteen days as declared. According to them, emergent relief has been given for 15 days; they are saying that records have been maintained and accounts will be given to you. I am not politicising it, but I am challenging it. Let a House Committee be formed and let them go and delve into the matter. If a single person has been given at this rate for 15 days, then I will humbly bow before you and this House and I shall quit this House and I shall resign from my membership. I represent the worst affected district of Orissa, and this is the state of affairs there.

Sir, under the circumstances, I have a few suggestions to make. This devastating disaster would never be forgotten and would go down in history as one of the biggest tragedies of the millennium. But this is a challenge and an opportunity as well to reconstruct a new and a prosperous Orissa. If the Central Government along with the State Governments and the world bodies come forward with their helping hand, then the reconstruction work for building a new and prosperous Orissa could start at the right earnest.

Fair price rice selling centres in each Panchayats, till the next harvest is made, at the rate of Rs. 4/- per kilogram should be made available to the people. They have lost their home and hearth. They have lost everything but their lives. More than 30,000 people have died and millions of people who have survived are virtually dying every moment. Should they not be saved? Should they not be helped? Should we not have sympathy for them? Should we not try to reconstruct this ravaged part of the nation? This is my submission.

Sir, my second suggestion is that test relief work should be started immediately so that the harijans, the people belonging to the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes and others who were working on daily wage basis could earn something for their survival.

SHRI RUPCHAND PAL (HOOGLY): The `food for work' scheme should be started.

SHRI TRILOCHAN KANUNGO : Either the `food for work' scheme or the test relief work should be started immediately.

Sir, the third suggestion that I would like to make is, there is a provision in the Relief code in Orissa for providing house building grants in three categories. First, for the completely washed away houses, there is a provision for payment of Rs. 3,500; second, for completely damaged houses there is a provision for payment of Rs. 2,000; and third, for partially damaged houses there is a provision for payment of Rs. 1000 per family. I would like to submit before this august House that, is it ever possible to raise a thatched roof or a mud house with Rs. 3500/- or Rs. 2000/-? Should this provision of the Relief code not be amended immediately to raise this amount? This does not require the approval of any legislature. The Cabinet could have done it but that has not yet been done. I would like to urge upon the hon. Prime Minister to see that this amount is raised at least to Rs. 5,000/- and is made available as grant so that the affected people could raise at least one room. Without this it would not be possible to provide them with a cover over their head.

SHRI ANIL BASU (ARAMBAGH): Rs. 500 crore should be provided as grant.

SHRI TRILOCHAN KANUNGO (JAGATSINGHPUR): Sir, I have visited the affected areas. I asked the doctors on duty there -- hundreds of people were suffering from cold and pneumonia -- as to what is the cure for this and they immediately answered that they needed a covered dwelling and not medicines. Even after five weeks we have not been able to provide a cover over their head.

Is it not a shame on us that we could not provide them with a piece of polythene ? This is the state of affairs in Orissa. No doubt the Central Government will give money. You have read about the story of polythene sheets from the newspapers and the suspension of the SRC as a scapegoat. Are we not ashamed of it? Should we not take action in such situations? Cutting across party lines I make this appeal to this august House. Should we remain mute spectators to all that is happening while millions of people are suffering and yet say, from the other side, that it is all politicking? No, Sir, in my life, though I am a new Member here, but during fifty years of my public life, I never took recourse to politicking. I always called a spade a spade and spoke the truth. Sir, such a Government should not be tolerated in the interest of millions of affected people. For heaven's sake, for those devastated people's sake, I urge upon you not to tolerate this.

Electricity restoration has not yet been done. We had a discussion with Shri George Fernandes. On the 15th or 16th of this month, he told me that within 15 days time, electricity would be restored. I had categorically told him that it was neither Kargil nor was it his Defence Department for things to move so fast. I said, `it cannot happen in Orissa and that it would take months together'. He, however, assured us of it. After ten days, not a single village has been electrified. Electricity has been restored to some towns but not to a single village.

The people there have lost everything during this time of harvest. Programmes should be taken up immediately for rabi cultivation, for providing seed, fertilizer, finance, etc. Please do not talk of politicking when I say this. Irrigation, Agriculture and Cooperation there in Orissa are in the hand of the most-corrupt man in this country. The C&AG report stands testimony to my statement. Most of us here know about this. Canal irrigation, lift irrigation should be facilitated. Number of diesel pump sets should also be provided so that rabi cultivation can be taken up in right earnest.

So far as long-term measures are concerned, I request all the housing finance institutions, including the World Bank if possible, to organise private finances to individuals for at least one 12 feet by 10 feet room with cyclones and floods. No demand for no-encumbrance certificate should be made for this. If you ask for a no-encumbrance certificate, you cannot finance anybody. Soft loans at five to six per cent interest can be given. I am told, HUDCO is going to grant some loans at a rate of eleven per cent interest. I request the Central Government to take up this matter. The rate of interest should be reduced to five to six per cent with a five-year moratorium and a repayment period of 20 years. Some of the States have come forward to adopt some districts. It is a very nice thing.

We pay our thanks and gratitude to them. But what are they going to do? That have not yet been discussed with the State Government let alone with adopted district authorities. What are they actually going to do, nobody knows. They have not done anything in this regard.