India dispatches earthquake relief to China

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Guwahati, May 17 : India on Saturday dispatched the first trance of its pledged five million dollar humanitarian assistance to China for the earthquake victims.

The total death toll in Sichuan province is 28,881 but it can exceed to 50,000. About 4.8 million people have lost their homes and the days are numbered in which survivors can be found.

External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee had earlier conveyed a message of condolence to his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi. He also conveyed India's readiness to provide assistance to supplement China's relief efforts.

The first lot carried by the Indian Air force Aircraft took off for Chengdu after an official approval between India and China.

"Roughly 18 people constituted this group including the air crew. The items have come basically from Delhi and they have been uploaded there in Delhi. The items consist of blankets, generators, tents, clothes and items which people out there require," M. Bahadur, Air Commander IAF told reporters in Guwahati.

The aircraft carrying 20-30 tonnes of load will make a brief visit and return back in few hours.

"We are basically going to deliver the relief material to China. The mission is not to stay there. As far as the items are concerned it is some relief materials. We are just going to deliver the goods and refuel, turn around and return back in a few hours," said C.M.P. Mathur, captain of the AIR.

The Chinese government has sent 130,000 troops to the disaster area, but roads buckled by the quake and blocked by landslides have made it hard for supplies and rescuers to reach the worst hit areas.

ANI

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