High Commission to ensure relief reaches Lankan Tamils

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Chennai, Nov 3 (UNI) The Centre today clarified that the relief materials collected by the Tamil Nadu Government for the suffering Eelam Tamils in Sri Lanka, would be sent to the Indian High Commission in Colombo, which will arrange for distribution in the affected areas through the International Red Cross and the United Nations.

The External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee offered the clarification when Chief Minister M Karunanidhi wanted to know the clear position on seeing media reports that the Lankan Government would only decide on how the relief materials would be distributed.

Mr Karunanidhi immediately faxed a letter to Mr Mukherjee as the reports contradicted his announcement regarding sending of relief materials when he came down to meet the Chief Minister on October 26.

Mr Karunanidhi also made it clear that a clarification was necessary in the wake of reports that the relief materials would not reach the affected Tamils.

''Within minutes, Mr Mukherjee, through his Secretary, sent a fax message to Mr Karunanidhi, clarifying the position'', an official release said.

The External Affairs Ministry said the relief materials will be shipped to the Indian High Commission in Colombo, which will arrange for its distribution in the affected areas through the International Committee of the Red Cross and the United Nations'', the release added.

The State Government also appealed to the media not to spread such unconfirmed reports and panic the people, especially when there was need to give a passionate look to the Tamils issue.

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