India offers $20-million more aid to flood-hit Pak

Written by Political Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Sep 1 2010, 06:23am hrs
India has decided to increase its assistance to Pakistan from $5 million, announced earlier, to $25 million. Out of this amount, $20 million would be contributed to the Pakistan Initial Floods Emergency Response Plan launched by the UN.

The announcement by external affairs minister S Krishna in the Lok Sabha comes in the wake of Pakistans readiness to accept Indias initial aid offer of $ 5 million, which is to be routed through the United Nations.

As a more concrete assessment of the damage inflicted by this natural disaster and the urgent needs of the people of Pakistan emerges, the Centre has decided to increase its assistance to Pakistan from $ 5 million, announced earlier, to $25 million, he said in a suo motu statement.

He noted that India had offered $5 million aid to Pakistan during his telephonic talks with Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on August 13.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in a conversation with Pakistan Premier Yusuf Raza Gilani on August 19, had conveyed that India was ready to do more to assist the neighbouring country which is facing the worst floods in the past 80 years.

Pakistan was reluctant to accept the aid and agreed only after a nudge from the US. However, last week Pakistan conveyed to India to route the aid through the UN.