India assures all help to war-displaced Tamils in Sri Lanka

"We are prepared to assist to the best of our capacity and do whatever we can," Rao, who arrived here last night, told the locals in Vavuniya.

She visited the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Vavuniya this morning and asked about their welfare. Rao flew this morning to the Wanni security forces headquarters and travelled by road to the IDP camps.

She visited the Chetikulam Menik Farm IDP camp and later headed for a meeting with the Vavuniya Government Agent.

The Foreign Secretary is scheduled to inspect de-mining programs in the north before heading for Jaffna.

In order to facilitate and enable rapid resettlement and rehabilitation of the IDPs, India has deployed seven demining teams in the neighbouring country.

In June 2009, India announced Rs 500 crores for relief and rehabilitation and resettlement in Northern and Eastern Sri Lanka. The immediate relief assistance last year included 2.5 lakh family relief packs which were mobilised by Tamil Nadu Government; deployment of an emergency field hospital for six months and two consignments of medicines for the use of the IDPs.

India also sent three consignments of 2600 MT each of shelter material and distributed 70,000 agricultural starters packs to revive agricultural activities. It had also gifted 55 buses to Northern, Eastern and Central Province besides conducting  an artificial limb fitment camp.

Recently New Delhi gifted four lakh cement bags for resettling IDP families to assist them to repair their damaged houses.

India has announced construction of 50,000 houses for the IDPs in the Northern and Eastern Provinces of Sri Lanka.

It is also assisting Sri Lanka in several infrastructural projects in Northern and Eastern Sri Lanka including railway lines, harbour, cultural centre, stadium and vocational centres.
Rao is scheduled to visit Mullaittivu in the north and Trincomalee in the East tomorrow before returning to Colombo in the afternoon of the same day to interact with Tamil and other leaders.

She is expected to meet Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Foreign Minister G L Peiris on Thursday before flying home.

Rao was accompanied by Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Ashok Kanta and Deputy High Commissioner Vikram Misri besides senior Sri Lankan officials.

Rao also expressed hope that Sri Lanka government will do their best to overcome the problems faced by IDPs.

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