Guwahati(PTI): Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today announced Rs 500 crore package for Assam which has been battling the worst floods in recent times that has left 77 people dead and nearly five lakh homeless.
Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi undertook an aerial survey of flood-hit areas of Jorhat, Dhemaji and Dakshin Dinajpur and witnessed the extensive damage to life and property in parts of the state.
He also announced an ex-gratia of Rs one lakh to the next of the kin of each of the 77 dead.
Singh, who is a Rajya Sabha member from Assam, announced the primary focus would be on rescuing people who have been left marooned in flood-hit areas and providing relief to them.
He said 16 teams of the National Disaster Response Force comprising 640 personnel and 71 boats have been pressed into service for carrying out relief and rescue operations.
In addition, 752 personnel of the Army have also been involved in relief and rescue operations.
As many as 4,000 persons have been rescued and 20 tonnes of relief material has been airlifted by the Air Force, Singh said.
He said 4.84 lakh people have taken shelter in the 768 relief camps set up across the state.
Singh said the state government has adequate stock of food grains and the Centre would move in additional supplies quickly, if required.
The Prime Minister said that immediate steps would be taken by the Railways Ministry to restore the stretch of damaged rail lines which has cut off links to Barak Valley, Tripura and Mizoram.