India 'may' accept foreign donations, says NDMA document

Yesterday, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar had said India will not accept any assistance from foreign governments for flood-ravaged Kerala in sync with an existing policy.

Published: 23rd August 2018 10:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2018 10:26 PM   |  A+A-

An aerial view of flood-hit villas in the Aluva-Paravur region. (Photo |EPS)


NEW DELHI: As the row over accepting funds from foreign governments for flood-hit Kerala continues, a 2016 document prepared by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) on how to handle an emergency situation suggests that assistance offered by any other country as a goodwill gesture "may" be accepted by the central government.

The National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP), a publication of the NDMA, on planning framework for disaster situations, has noted that as a matter of policy, the government of India does not issue any appeal for foreign assistance in the wake of a disaster.

"However, if the national government of another country voluntarily offers assistance as a goodwill gesture in solidarity with the disaster victims, the central government may accept the offer," the NDMP says.

The handbook carries messages of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

The NDMP says the Ministry of Home Affairs is required to coordinate with the Ministry of External Affairs, which is primarily responsible for reviewing foreign offers of assistance and channelising the same.

In consultation with the state government concerned, the MHA will assess the response requirements that the foreign teams can provide.

The document says in case of an offer of assistance from UN agencies, India will accept it only if the government considers it necessary, based on various factors.

If accepted, the government of India will issue directions to the respective ministry or state government to coordinate with the concerned UN agency.

"Any financial assistance offered by UN financial institutions involving foreign exchange will require the approval of the Department of Economic Affairs.

India will allow UN agencies and international NGOs already operating in the country at the time of the disaster event to continue their humanitarian assistance to people in the affected area in coordination with the relevant central ministries/departments and the state government as per applicable norms and protocols," it says.

When asked for a comment on the NDMP, a home ministry spokesperson said: "At this stage, the ministry of home affairs has no comment to offer".

Yesterday, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar had said India will not accept any assistance from foreign governments for flood-ravaged Kerala in sync with an existing policy.

He said the government was committed to meeting the requirements for relief and rehabilitation in Kerala through domestic efforts.

A number of countries have announced assistance for flood relief operations in Kerala.

While the United Arab Emirates has offered USD 100 million (around Rs 700 crore), Qatar has pledged around Rs 35 crore and Maldives has announced a donation of USD 50,000 (Rs 35 lakh).

The Kerala government is keen to accept the donations from the UAE.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said the state government would approach the Prime Minister to clear hurdles, if any, in receiving the aid offered to the state by the United Arab Emirates.

Vijayan and Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac yesterday said India, by law, could accept financial aid voluntarily given by a foreign government in times of a severe calamity.

They cited the National Disaster Management Plan.


Follow The New Indian Express channel on WhatsApp


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