Government has inherited policy of refusing foreign aid from UPA regime: Union minister KJ Alphons 

The government is under fire for refusing aid for Kerala from countries like the UAE and Thailand.

Published: 23rd August 2018 03:54 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2018 03:57 PM   |  A+A-

Minister of State for Tourism Alphons Kannanthanam (File photo | EPS)


NEW DELHI: In refusing foreign aid for the rehabilitation of flood-hit Kerala, the Centre has followed a 14-year convention it "inherited" from previous governments of refusing such assistance in the face of natural calamities, Union minister Alphons Kannanthanam said today.

The government is under fire for refusing aid for Kerala from countries like the UAE and Thailand.

Alphons said this was a policy that was followed by the current government since former prime minister Manmohan Singh had refused aid from foreign countries in 2004 during the devastating Tsunami.

READ| Union minister Alphons Kannanthanam sleeps in Kerala relief camp, trolled for posting picture

"A policy decision was taken by the Manmohan Singh government in December, 2004 in the aftermath of the Tsunami and that policy has been continued with for the last 14 years. This is something we have inherited," he told reporters here.

Earlier, among others, Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac had criticised the BJP-led government over the refusal of aid and said the rain-ravaged southern state had asked the Centre for a financial support of Rs 2,200 crore, but was granted only Rs 600 crore.

"We make no request to any foreign government but UAE government voluntarily offered Rs 700 crore. No, says Union government, it is below our dignity to accept foreign aid.  This is a dog in the manger policy (sic)," Isaac had written on Twitter.

He had further said as part of the state government's resource mobilisation efforts for the ongoing relief-and-rescue operations for the flood-hit people, it had increased the excise duty on liquor and was geared to approach the GST Council for imposing a 10-per cent cess on SGST.

"Both together on annualised basis mobilise Rs 750 crore (sic)," Isaac had written on the microblogging website.

Alphons, who has been in the thick of things, is continuously updating the rest of the country about the conditions in Kerala and listing out the requirements of the people of the state as they hobble back to normalcy.

The Union tourism minister also appealed to all the Indians to donate "big money" for the cause. "We need huge amounts of money -- millions and billions of dollars to rebuild Kerala.

Now we need that big money. Please send money to the chief minister's relief fund and not to NGOs that are not credible," he said.

Incessant rains have claimed over 230 lives in Kerala since August 8.

India Matters


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp