As floods crisis spreads, Modi offers assistance to Pakistan

Published September 7, 2014
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi looks over a flood-affected area from an aeroplane. -AFP Photo
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi looks over a flood-affected area from an aeroplane. -AFP Photo
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. — Photo by AFP
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. — Photo by AFP

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed anguish at the loss of lives and property caused by floods -- the worst in 60 years -- and said he was ready to provide Pakistan assistance in tackling the disaster.

A report published on the Deccan Chronicle website quoted Modi as saying, "In this hour of distress, the government of India is ready to provide humanitarian assistance to those areas if the Pakistan government needs it."

This humanitarian gesture by Modi comes against the backdrop of his visit to Indian-held Kashmir, following the devastation caused by massive flooding in the Jhelum river. Declaring the Jammu and Kashmir floods a "national level disaster", Modi called upon other states to pitch in with relief assistance.

The Indian prime minister said Rs200,000 (Indian rupees) will be provided to the next of kin of each person whose life has been lost in the calamity and Rs50,000 would be provided to each person who is grievously injured.


Floods spread


Landslides and flash floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains have killed nearly 300 people in large swaths of northern India and Pakistan.

The flooding has submerged villages and ruined crops with over 2,500 villages partially or completely submerged across the area, while thousands of people are stranded on rooftops waiting to be rescued.

Also read: Floods crisis rapidly becoming national emergency

Rescuers in both countries were using helicopters and boats to try to reach tens of thousands of people stranded in their homes as floodwaters rose and submerged many villages.

More than 4,000 homes across Pakistan have collapsed, rendering thousands of people homeless.

Pakistan's armed forces and civilian rescuers have mounted a massive operation using helicopters and boats to get villagers to safety.

Pakistan and India suffer widespread flooding each year during the monsoon season, which runs from June through September. In 2010, flash floods killed 1,700 people in Pakistan.

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