Popular Front of India General Secretary M Mohamed Ali Jinnah who was visiting the cyclone affected areas of Tamil Nadu urged central government to end its ‘step motherly attitude’ towards the state and declare the calamity a national disaster to address the large scale destruction suffered by the state. Upon visiting Adirampattinam, Sedubavachatiram and other areas in Tanjore district devastated by Cyclone Gaja, Mr Jinnah met the affected people, assessed the losses and consoled them.
In the statement issued after the visit he said: ‘’Cyclone Gaja has caused huge damage to the state, taken dozens of lives, and destroyed the houses, properites and livelihood of tens of thousands of people, majorities of whom are poor farmers and fishermen. It’s sheer display of disregard for the people of the state that the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not even offered a word of condolence, let alone visiting the affected areas. Weeks passed since the disaster, Central Government has not yet even made a single step towards relief and rehabilitation in the areas. They say that the relief can be allocated only after receiving the assessment report. But the same government was quick to offer Rs. 500 crores immediately after two districts in Gujarat were hit by the floods in July 2017. Modi had even visited the areas personally. This clearly exposes the step motherly attitude towards Tamil Nadu. We call upon the central government to end this double standard and allow the Rs. 15,000 crore aid as requested by the state government. It is also very unfortunate that such a large scale disaster received very dismal coverage in the national media. The media has the duty to inform the nation of the damages and prompt the authorities to act immediately.”
“There is a general feeling among the affected that the compensation being provided by the state Government is inadequate. I also request the Tamilnadu Government to provide a reasonably adequate compensation to them and ensure that it is distributed undue delay.”
“I would like to tell the people of Tamil Nadu that Popular Front will be with you doing everything we can to rebuild the lives of our affected brethren. We express our deep condolences to the family members of those who had lost their lives.”
Nearly 1000 trained cadres of Popular Front of India have been involved in the rescue and relief operations since the beginning. The state unit of Popular Front so far distributed basic relief materials worth nearly 90 lakhs rupees. Popular Front national committee contributed Rs. 20 lakhs to the relief fund set up by the state committee.
Popular Front of India State Executive Council member Nasrudeen, Tanjore South District President Haja Alaudeen, All India Imams Council State President Abirudeen Manbayee and SDPI District President Ilyas accompanied the National General Secretary in the visit.