India has sent relief materials, including 62,000 food packages, to Bangladesh for Rohingya refugees from Myanmar, who poured into this country following the ethnic violence in the neighbouring Buddhist-majority nation.
Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Harsh Vardhan Shringla handed over the relief materials to Bangladesh authorities at southeastern Chittagong Port. Shringla praised Bangladesh for successfully handling the “great humanitarian crisis”.
“We are very happy that the consignments of Indian relief materials reached Bangladesh by air and sea as India stood beside Bangladesh with the humanitarian assistance as neighbouring development partner,” he said.
Shringla said diplomatic efforts were underway at “multidimensional and bilateral levels” to reach a constructive solution for ensure “true justice and peace in Myanmar”.
The Indian Naval ship INS Gorial carried the goods as part of ‘Operation Insaniyat’, an Indian High Commission official said.
Officials said the consignment contained 62,000 family packs each containing 12 tonnes of rice, lentil, edible oil, sugar, powder milk, salt, tea, mosquito net and soap.
An aircraft carrying another consignment of relief goods weighing 53.50 tonnes from China also reached today at Chittagong’s Shah Amanat International Airport. The Chinese government sent another 57 tonnes of relief materials for the Rohingyas yesterday.
Earlier, two Indian cargo flights carrying 107 tonnes of relief materials arrived at Chittagong on September 14 and 15. The US also said it will provide an additional USD 6 million to the UN World Food Program (WFP) to address the Rohingya crisis in Bangladesh while this funding was in addition to the USD 1 million provided to WFP earlier this year.
Bangladesh, which is facing a big influx of Rohingyas from Myanmar, has called on the international community to intervene and put pressure on Myanmar to address the exodus According to the UN estimates, nearly 500,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine state into Bangladesh since August 25 when fresh wave of violence erupted According to media reports, the violence began when Rohingya militants attacked police posts in Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state.
Rohingya residents – a stateless mostly Muslim minority in a Buddhist-majority nation – allege that the military and Rakhine Buddhists responded with a brutal campaign against them, according to the reports.
Bangladesh had earlier said the new influx of Rohingya refugees is an unbearable additional burden on the country which has been hosting nearly 500,000 Myanmar nationals who had to leave their country in the past due to communal violence and repeated military operations.
(With inputs from agencies)