According to insurers, losses in Chennai were more than in Bangalore because the former is a transit point for the transportation of goods and commodities for the rest of southern region.

Radhika Menon

Mumbai, Nov. 15

IF the insurance claims from the Mumbai floods in August stood at Rs 2,300 crore, the losses appear to be not so high in Chennai and Bangalore.

While surveyors estimate losses from the rains that lashed these cities three weeks ago to cross Rs 70 crore, insurance companies are more circumspect and put the figure at around Rs 40 crore.

Of this, Chennai seems to have borne the brunt, with bulk of the claims coming by way of industrial losses. The official figure of the losses are however still lower with many of the claims awaiting assessment.

United India Insurance, New India Assurance and Oriental Insurance have received claims worth Rs 35 crore.

A senior official at the Chennai-based United India Insurance Company said that the total reported losses so far were around Rs 13 crore - Rs 9 crore from Chennai, Rs 2 crore from Bangalore and another Rs 2 crore from Andhra Pradesh.

The majority of the losses were due to damage of stocks in godowns, the official said.

Oriental Insurance Company has pegged its losses at around Rs 14 crore with Bangalore and Chennai accounting for Rs 12 crore and Rs 2 crore each.

New India Assurance has received around 140 claims from Chennai and 12 claims from Bangalore to the tune of Rs 3.5 crore.

Losses in Chennai are yet to be assessed, said a company official. However, insurance surveyors expect the claims to be much more higher. A surveyor in Chennai said there were around 40 claims of Rs 1 crore each.

The industrial estates of Vyasarpadi and Ambattur in suburban Chennai were badly affected due to floods.

The surveyor said, "Since Diwali was approaching, the godowns were stocked with goods. Commodities such as sugar, cotton and garlic; electronic goods such as computers, fridges and washing machines and auto parts were among the damaged items".

According to insurance company officials, losses in Chennai were more than in Bangalore because the former is a transit point for the transportation of goods and commodities for the rest of south India.

While there were around 1,000 motor claims, surveyors said repairs were being handled at the garage level itself.

According to surveyors in Bangalore, losses in the city are in the region of Rs 25-30 crore.

Industrial losses were reported mainly in the area of Bomanahalli and Outer Ring Road.

Motor losses in Bangalore have been pegged at Rs 1 crore.

"There are a number of software companies here that had their basements flooded.

"The damage has been with respect to generators, air conditioners and other electronic items," said a surveyor.

Some of the offices of Wipro, a few BPOs and software companies are among the claimants.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated November 16, 2005)
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