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Property loss to go beyond Rs. 1 lakh cr?

Property loss to go beyond Rs. 1 lakh cr?

The AP government, which is struggling to assess the damage caused by India's first urban cyclone disaster in Visakhapatnam, said the worth of the property loss, both private and public combined, would be between Rs 25,000 crore to Rs 1 lakh crore.

Based on the lessons learnt from Katrina-like disasters across the globe, the state government is working on a new computerized methodology to assess the loss of property in Vizag.

According to C Kutumba Rao, vice chairman, state planning board, the total damage to infrastructure could go up to Rs 1 lakh crore.

“What we saw yesterday was an urban devastation by a cyclone. We have the experience of cyclone flooding in cities like Mumbai. But for the first time, a cyclone played unprecedented havoc in Vizag.We need a new methodology to assess the damage,“ Rao said.

Drawing parallels to Katrina, which struck New Orleans, Louisiana, in 2005, Rao said the damage, which was initially estimated at $35 billion, finally went up to $108 billion following the discovery of hidden losses.

“In Vizag also, if we compute all losses, from minor property loss caused to residential apartments to the devastation in the national highways, defence establishments etc, the damage is likely to go up phenomenally ,“ he said.

While computing the damage in an urban set-up, the government needs to factor in the time needed to replace the infrastructure to estimate the total loss. Added to this would be the loss of production and man-hours. This is how the final figures of the Katrina havoc in US were calculated, Rao said.

Giving the example of the arterial highway between Uppada and Kakinada, which was totally washed away , Rao said hundreds of kilometers of road had got washed away in the four coastal districts.

“Given the cost of repairing the highway , which would be Rs 1 crore per km, it would require several thousand crores to repair the total damaged roads,“ he added.

Source: TimesOfIndia

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Tags: Hudhud Property loss Vishakhapatnam