India announces 5 million dollar assistance to China for quake relie

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New Delhi, May 15 (UNI) India today announced a 5 million US dollar assistance to China for relief and rehabilitation of the victims of the May 12 temblor in Sichuan province which killed thousands of people and caused devastation.

This amount will be utilised for relief material including blankets, tents, sleeping bags, medicines, an External Affairs Ministry spokesman said here today.

President Pratibha Patil, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee have each sent messages of condolence to the government and people of China and conveyed India's readiness to provide assistance to supplement China's relief efforts.

''Keeping in view India's close and good neighbourly ties with China, the Government of India has decided to offer assistance of 5 million US dollars to China for its relief activities for the victims of the earthquake,'' the spokesman added.

President Patil, in a condolence message to Chinese President Hu Jintao, said she had learnt with great shock and dismay of the devastation and destruction and the massive loss of lives, including those of school children.

Expressing confidence that the people of China would overcome this adversity with fortitude and courage, the President said India was willing to make a contribution for mitigating the sufferings of the ''friendly people of China.'' UNI RB BDP HT1520

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