India today made it clear that it will not accept any assistance from foreign governments for flood-ravaged Kerala in sync with an existing policy. External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the government was committed to meeting the requirements for relief and rehabilitation in Kerala through domestic efforts.
A number of countries have announced assistance for flood relief operations in Kerala. While the United Arab Emirates has offered USD 100 million (around Rs 700 crore), Qatar has pledged around Rs 35 crore and Maldives has announced a donation of USD 50,000 (Rs 35 lakh).
Kumar, however, said contributions to the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund and the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund from NRIs (Non Resident Indians, PIOs (Persons of Indian Origin) and international entities such as foundation. The Kerala government is keen to accept the donations from the UAE. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the state government would approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi to clear hurdles, if any, in receiving the aid offered to the state by the United Arab Emirates.
Sources said funds coming from the UAE through foundations or international entities will be acceptable. The UPA government, during the Uttarakhand floods in 2013, had decided not to accept assistance from foreign countries. Sources said India has already conveyed decision of not accepting offer of assistance to Kerala by several countries.