Centre should chip in to help diaspora: Achuthanandan

June 12th, 2009 - 3:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, June 12 (IANS) Kerala Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan Friday lashed out at the central government for only making announcements and not doing anything to help the diaspora and those who have returned from abroad.
“The centre should now start coming to the help of the diaspora and those who have returned. We have had enough of announcements, now they should act. Every year people from Kerala who work abroad send back Rs.65,000 crore (Rs.650 billion) and it comes by way of foreign exchange and the centre can easily apportion a share of that to the needy,” he said, while distributing financial aid of Rs.10,000 each to a dozen people who had returned from abroad.

State legislator Manjalamkuzhi Ali, who is on the board of Norka-Roots (the state government agency that looks after the welfare of the diaspora and return emigrants) told IANS that a new fund called the Norka-Roots Chairman Fund has been set up for this purpose.

“The money for disbursement comes from the income of Norka-Roots and the most needy among the returned emigrants are identified and given the assistance. This is the first time that any government is doing this,” said Ali.

Kerala has close to two million of its people working abroad of which 90 per cent are in the Middle East. There are also one million migrants who have returned to the state.

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