The Indian government has decided not to accept foreign donations for flood relief and rehabilitation works in its flood ridden Southern State, Kerala. However, there is no restriction for the people residing in foreign countries to extend their support personally, local media reports said on Wednesday (22).
The government thanked the countries who have come forward with their financial assistance and has communicated that it won’t receive any foreign assistance as per existing rules. According to the rule altered in 2004 states that any financial aid from abroad shouldn’t be accepted after natural calamities.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, called up Indian Prime minister Narendra Modi and offered his financial support, according to a statement from Kerala Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
The Maldives and Qatar have also reportedly come forward with their donations, whereas the United Nations has also pledged its assistance to India.
Meanwhile, state, nationals leaders of opposition parties led by Indian National Congress (INC) have urged the union government to alter the exciting rules to pave a way to receive donations from abroad for flood relief operations in Kerala.
According to a report from Associated Press of India (ANI), former Kerala chief minister, senior INC leader Ommen Chandy, in a letter to Modi, said, “Unfortunately, I am sorry to say that the financial assistance announced by the Government of India is quite disappointing as far as the magnitude of the crisis is concerned.”
Another INC senior leader, India’s former defence minister AK Antony asked Indian prime minister Narendra Modi led union government to rewrite the rules so that financial assistance can come from foreign countries for flood-hit Kerala.
Kerala is expected to seek to obtain more than Rs 100 billion (1.1 billion pounds) from union government for reconstruction works after it witnessed damage of at least Rs 200bn (2.21bn pounds) due to heavy rains in a century, Kerala Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Tuesday (21).
More than one million people in Kerala have moved to relief camps to save their lives from devastating floods, landslides triggered by torrential rains which resulted in the death of more than 410 people and devastation of 50,000 homes in Kerala as on Tuesday (21).