India to Accept Donations from Abroad Amid COVID-19 Outbreak for PM Cares Fund

© REUTERS / RUPAK DE CHOWDHURIA police officer uses a megaphone advising people to vacate the roads after the lockdown by West Bengal state government to limit the spreading of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Kolkata, India March 23, 2020
A police officer uses a megaphone advising people to vacate the roads after the lockdown by West Bengal state government to limit the spreading of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Kolkata, India March 23, 2020 - Sputnik International
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New Delhi (Sputnik): Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 28 March, keeping in mind people’s offers of financial assistance, constituted the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund. Modi stated that a separate fund was created to track the total amount donated and spent in battling COVID-19.

The government of India has decided to accept donations and funds from abroad for the PM Care Fund, according to sources in the External Affairs Ministry. It was also stated that foreign contributions will only be accepted by the "PM cares Fund", as the situation with the coronavirus is unexpected and of far larger proportions than previous calamities.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had advised the heads of all Indian embassies and high commissions across the world on Monday “to suitably publicise the newly-established PM-CARES fund to mobilise donations from abroad”.

India has typically refrained from taking foreign aid during natural calamities such as floods and earthquakes. The most recent example being the aid offered by the UAE during the Kerala floods, which India did not accept. It has been a decade and half since Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government during the 2004 Tsunami had made it clear that India did not need aid.

India accepts help in rescue operations but doesn’t take contributions to the prime minister's and chief minister's relief funds from PIOs, NRIs and international organisations.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that the PM Cares Fund would accept financial assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak in the country, which has resulted in more than 1,600 cases and taken 38 lives so far, as per the ministry of health and family welfare.

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