New Delhi: The Centre on Tuesday approved 2,000-crore relief fund for areas affected by drought last year in Maharashtra.

A decision in this regard was taken at a meeting of the high-level committee (HLC) of National Disaster Management, headed by home minister Rajnath Singh. “The HLC today sanctioned 2,000 crores for year 2014 under National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) for drought affected areas of Maharashtra," agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh said in a statement.

The approved amount is four times higher than 500 crores sanctioned as relief for 2013 drought, he added. The state faced severe drought last year due to poor monsoon, affecting crop yields and drinking water supply.

The committee examined the proposals based on the inputs of the central team, which visited the affected areas. The HLC also decided to extend assistance to Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh which faced floods and landslides, a separate statement released by the home ministry said.

The central assistance will be given from the National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF). Besides the home minister and the agriculture minister, finance minister Arun Jaitley and senior officers of the ministries of home, finance and agriculture attended the meeting.

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