Kerala says no obstacles to accepting UAE aid, to take up issue with PM

PTI

Pinarayi-Vijayan-Kerala-CM-3-720x340The Kerala government would approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi to clear hurdles, if any, in receiving the 100 million dollars (Rs.700 crores) flood relief aid offered to the state by the United Arab Emirates, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan today said.

Referring to reports that Centre was unlikely to accept foreign funds for the flood relief works, he said  there were no obstacles for accepting such assistance.

 “Donations from other countries are acceptable. Will approach the Prime Minister if required,” he told reporters.

It was natural that two countries help each other. The Disaster Management policy announced in 2016 makes it clear that if any national government of another country voluntarily offers assistance as a good will gesture in solidarity with the disaster victims, the Central government may accept the offer, Vijayan said.

The state government wanted to sort out the issue by holding discussions at theofficial level, but if necessary would seek the Prime Minister’s intervention.

The Congress earlier in the day termed as disappointing reports that the Centre was unlikely to accept any foreign financial aid for flood relief work and requested the Prime Minister to take steps to amend the rules.

The government of UAE, which hosts a large number of expatriates from Kerala, has yesterday promised an assistance of USD 100 million for the reconstruction of the state, which has been devastated by the unprecedented deluge that left 231 people dead and displaced over 14.50 lakh.

(PTI)