Central assistance to Telangana for floods: Who is telling the truth? TRS or BJP?

Leaders of the TRS as well as the BJP are involved in a slugfest over the Union government’s assistance to the flood-hit regions of Telangana.

ByDeeksha Devadiga

Published Jul 21, 2022 | 6:54 PMUpdatedJul 28, 2022 | 2:53 PM


On Tuesday, 19 July, the BJP-led NDA government told Parliament how much funds had been released under National Disaster Management Fund (NDRF) to various states.

Notably, Telangana hadn’t received any funds from the  NDRF since 2018-2019, as per the response of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

The revealing data turned into ammo for the Telangana Rashtra Samithi government in Telangana that had already been fuming over Union government refusing it NDRF funds.

TRS’ claims of Union government not releasing any funds are being countered by the BJP which has claimed that more than ₹3,000 crore had been allocated to Telangana for disaster management. Both parties have been throwing numbers, data and documents at each other to prove their claim. The truth, however, lies somewhere in the middle.

Flood aid: New TRS-BJP flashpoint in poll-bound Telangana

The TRS and BJP leaders are rolling up their sleeves in an apparent showdown on the central assistance for undertaking relief operations in the wake of Godavari floods leaving a trail of destruction in several parts of the state, besides wreaking havoc in the temple town of Bhadrachalam and the villages nearby.

Telangana government’s charge that the Union government hasn’t released a single rupee under NDRF since 2018, despite the state facing severe flooding this year and in 2020, is being led by TRS working President K Tarak Rama Rao aka KTR.

The BJP, which is hoping to improve its prospects in Telangana and elevate its status to primary opposition party in the upcoming election, is being led by Union Minister for Culture and Tourism G Kishan Reddy.

Where’s the money?

TRS’ claim that not a single rupee had been released to Telangana from NDRF is true.

The BJP’s claim that thousands of crores have been released to Telangana for disaster management since 2014 is also true.

The BJP, however, is clubbing all funds allocated to Telangana, including from the State Disaster Response Fund (SDFR), State Disaster Mitigation Fund (SDMF), and NDRF.

Another piece of information that the BJP is leaving out is that the SDRF is a statutory allocation to all states every year towards which state governments too contribute 25 percent.

The TRS is steering clear of mentioning SDRF funds to which Centre contributes 75 percent, except for North-eastern and Himalayan states where it provides 90 percent funding.

SDRF is a fund constituted under section 48(1) (a) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 (53 of 2005). It is funded by a 75:25 ratio between Centre and State and is part of the Union government’s grant-in-aid to states each fiscal year.


The SDRF is to be used by the state government to provide immediate relief to victims of cyclones, droughts, earthquakes, fire, floods, tsunami, hailstorms, landslides, avalanches, cloudbursts, pest attacks, and frost and cold waves.

The NDRF, on the other hand, is an additional grant-in-aid by the Union government when calamities of more severe nature hit.

NDRF is constituted under section 46 of Disaster Management Act, 2005. It is meant to supplement funds from SDRF. This means states that do not have adequate fund in SDRF for immediate relief during a natural calamity can seek additional funds from NDRF corpus.

The NDRF is funded by the Union government by way of an appropriation bill in Parliament and also by donations and grants by individuals.

NDRF funds are released to a state only after it submits a memorandum seeking additional funds and a central review team assesses damage. After this, a high-level committee led by Union Home Minister has to deem it necessary to release funds.

Telangana has not received any funds from NDRF since 2018, despite the devastating 2020 floods that killed more than 70 people. Telangana had then sought an immediate assistance of Rs 1,350 crore from the Union government.

How much has Centre really given Telangana?

South First looked at SDRF and NDRF funds released to Telangana from fiscal year 2014-2015 to as recently as 2022-2023. The numbers below indicate only the Union government’s 75 percent share in the SDRF.

In all, since 2014, the Union government’s share of the disaster management fund in Telangana is Rs 3,350 crore. The last time the Central government released funds from NDRF was in the fiscal year 2017-2018.

Hyderabad floods 2020

As far as Hyderabad floods 2020 were concerned, the Centre informed Lok Sabha on Tuesday that no funds were released, though a central team visited the Telangana capital and made an assessment of the situation.  Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai admitted that no support was extended to Telangana after the Hyderabad floods.

For this year's flood, Telangana has assessed damage at over ₹1,400 crore and has sought an assistance of ₹1,000 crore.

A central team is expected in Hyderabad very soon to make an assessment of the damage caused by the Godavari floods. It remains to be seen if the team would recommend any assistance, and if so, whether the Centre would release funds accordingly. Or would it — once again — turn a blind eye once to Telangana's woes.