Indian state seeks millions of dollars for floods

AP News
Posted: Sep 30, 2011 1:02 AM
Indian state seeks millions of dollars for floods

The flood-ravaged Indian state of Orissa is asking for about $726 million in federal funds to help cope with the destruction and relocate hundreds of thousands of people.

The monsoon flooding follows a severe drought earlier in the year and has killed at least 81 people in Orissa alone since August while toppling thousands of mud huts and inundating huge tracts of farmland.

Authorities have stepped up efforts to air drop food packages and evacuate marooned villagers.

Special Relief Commissioner P.K. Mohapatra says damage is estimated at 32.6 billion rupees, or about $726 million.

Flooding has also hit the eastern states of Bihar and West Bengal, Assam in the northeast and Uttar Pradesh in the north. Altogether, hundreds have been killed.