Relax norms for aid to come from abroad: Antony

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Alappuzha (Kerala), Aug 22 (IANS) Congress leader A.K. Antony on Wednesday asked the Modi government to rewrite the rules so that financial support can come from abroad for flood-hit Kerala.

“If the rule was changed by the previous government, I have no qualms to say that the Modi government should rewrite it,” Antony told the media.

“With the present rule, it may not be possible to accept the $100 million announced by the UAE government for Kerala. So change the rules,” said Antony.

It was during the first Congress-led UPA government that the rules was altered that financial assistance from foreign countries should not be accepted after natural disasters.

“It must not be forgotten that with a huge Kerala diaspora working in the Middle East, the governments in those countries have an emotional bonding with Kerala. That’s why the UAE government responded so quickly. Likewise we will be getting assistance from the UN and other agencies too. So any law that has to be amended must be done,” said Antony.

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Hundreds of thousands are sheltered in over 3,000 relief camps in Kerala following the devastating floods, the worst since 1924. The death toll since the monsoon rains began on May 29 has been estimated at around 370.

–IANS

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