kerala flood
Kerala floodsMANJUNATH KIRAN/AFP/Getty Images)

The central government, the Kerala government and the World Bank have signed a loan agreement of $250 million (Rs 1,725 crore) for the First Resilient Kerala Programme to help Kerala get back into shape after the 2018 floods.

The 2018 floods and landslides in Kerala had led to severe impact on property, infrastructure, and lives and livelihoods of people. One-sixth of the state's population - about 5.4 million people - were affected while 1.4 million were displaced from their homes, especially the poor and vulnerable segments of the population.

The Resilient Kerala Programme will focus on strengthening Kerala's institutional and financial capacity to protect the assets and livelihoods of poor and vulnerable groups through an inclusive and participatory approach.

Union Finance Ministry official Sameer Kumar Khare said that the programme is part of the government's support to Kerala's 'Rebuild Kerala Development Programme' aimed at building a green and resilient Kerala. He said that this partnership will identify key areas of policy and institutional strengthening to maximise development impact.

The loan agreement was signed by Sameer Kumar Khare on behalf of the government and Junaid Kamal Ahmad, Country Director, World Bank India.

The World Bank has been working closely with the central government and Kerala government since the floods struck in August 2018 in assessing the impact of the floods and assisting in recovery and reconstruction. The bank support also helped identify policies, institutions and systems for resilience to disaster risks and climate change.

Junaid Kamal Ahmad said that the partnership is a key pillar of the bank's new Country Partnership Framework for India. Through such partnerships, the bank will support select states striving to bring about systemic improvements in the way development initiatives are planned and executed.

"In Kerala, we will work across cross-cutting themes and priority sectors to build systems of resilience. We are committed to supporting the state government in bringing about a perceptible change in the lives and livelihoods of its citizens," he added.