PM's package for Gujarat floods draws criticism in Assam



Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to flood-hit Gujarat and announcement of Rs 500-crore package for the state has drawn flak from various sections in Assam, who have alleged neglect of their state by the central government.

While Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), a prominent farmers' organisation in Assam, has condemned the attitude of the Prime Minister, Congress spokesman and former state minister Pradyut Bordoloi lambasted the Prime Minister and the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre for Assam's neglect.

They alleged that the central government was neglecting the issue of devastating floods in Assam that has led to 76 persons' death and affected over 25 lakh.

"We do not have any objection to the Prime Minister announcing Rs 500 crore for the state of Gujarat. But the people of Assam are also suffering due to devastating floods... What stopped him from announcing a package for Assam to tide over the situation?" said KMSS President Akhil Gogoi.

"The Prime Minister often delivers emotional dialogues regarding Assam and the Northeast. But he should have considered the case of Assam when the state was witnessing one of the worst floods. The central government has sent a team now when the water has started receding. What will they see and assess now," asked Gogoi.

Congress spokesman Bordoloi said the people of Assam and Northeast had been suffering from a sense of neglect.

"Earlier, Prime Ministers at least made attempts to reach out to the people here in times of crisis. But Prime Minister Modi visits Assam only during election or to inaugurate a bridge which was constructed by the Congress," Bordoloi said.

"He is a good actor and he has shown his true colour after his visit to Gujarat, which is even economically stronger than Assam. He did not even have time to visit Assam, so he sent a junior minister to take stock of the situation here," said Bordoloi, adding that this showed the seriousness of the government.

BJP leader and Assam Health and Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, however, said that the people of Assam were not a showpiece that people needed to come here to see them.

"We have the power to withstand our sorrows. We'll call the Prime Minister to the state whenever we achieve something," said Sarma, rebutting the criticism of Modi. - IANS