Pranab to visit Bangladesh tomorrow; will hand over cyclone aid

November 30th, 2007 - 6:17 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, Nov 30 (ANI): External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee will visit Dhaka tomorrow to hand over the aid pledged by India with a sense of urgency following a severe cyclone hit Bangladesh on November 15.

Pranab will convey solidarity of the people of India to those affected by the cyclone, which resulted in heavy loss of life and widespread destruction in coastal areas.

During his visit, Pranab will meet Bangladesh Chief Advisor Dr Fakhruddin Ahmed and Foreign Advisor Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury. He will survey some cyclone affected areas and meet the victims.

Over the last few days, the Indian Air Force (IAF) aircraft have been expeditiously delivering relief materials consisting of medicines, tents, blankets, ready-to-eat meals and portable water-purifiers to Bangladesh.

An IL-76 aircraft left New Delhi this afternoon for Dhaka carrying the last consignment of relief supplies. Mukherjee is expected to formally hand over this consignment to the Bangladeshi authorities tomorrow.

As announced by the External Affairs Minister earlier, India is also sending essential food items such as food aid, including rice, wheat and milk powder, worth nearly 100 crore rupees to Bangladesh. Delivery of these items is being expedited. One such consignment consisting of more than 9,000 metric tonnes of rice reached Chittagong (Bangladesh) during the Ramadan.

Earlier, following torrential rains, which caused mudslides in Chittagong in June 2007, India had also extended 10-million-dollar cash assistance to Bangladesh.
In a gesture, India has also lifted the current ban on export of rice with respect to Bangladesh allowing it to import 50,000 metric tonnes from India. (ANI)

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