COLOMBO – A consignment of humanitarian assistance worth more than Rs 2 billion donated by the people of India was handed over to Foreign Minister Prof. G.L Peiris by High Commissioner of India in Sri Lanka, Gopal Baglay, on Sunday (22).
The consignment consisted of 9,000 metric tonnes of rice, 50 metric tonnes of milk powder and more than 25 metric tonnes of drugs and other medical supplies.
A statement from the Indian High Commission said, the consignment, flagged off from Chennai port by Thiru M.K Stalin, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on Wednesday (19), was the first shipment under a larger US$ 16 million commitment of 40,000 metric tonnes of rice, 500 metric tonnes of milk powder and medicines by Government of Tamil Nadu.
The statement said the consignment is to be distributed among vulnerable and needy sections in various parts of Sri Lanka including Northern, Eastern, Central and Western Provinces by Government of Sri Lanka in the coming days.
It also said more humanitarian consignments and other forms of assistance from India was set to follow and that the multi-pronged endeavour by both the government and people of India underlines the importance attached to Sri Lanka and reflects its concerns for the well-being of the people of Sri Lanka.
The High Commission also noted that the support extended to Sri Lanka ranged from economic assistance worth around US$ 3.5 billion, supply of vaccines, testing kits, close to 1000 metric tonnes of liquid oxygen to combat COVID-19, immediate response by Indian Navy and Coast Guard to mitigate marine disasters.
Sunday’s handing over function was attended by the Minister for Ports and Shipping Nimal Siripala de Silva, former minister Vajira Abeywardena, Sagala Ratnayaka, Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister, Senthil Thondaman, Leader of Ceylon Workers Congress, Food Commissioner. J. Krishnamurthy, and senior officials.