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India Sends Relief Material to Cyclone-hit Madagascar

INS Airavat takes relief material to cyclone-hit Madagascar.

INS Airavat takes relief material to cyclone-hit Madagascar.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said the Indian Navy has already launched 'Op Vanilla' to help the cyclone-hit nation and has diverted its naval ship to provide relief material to the affected people.

New Delhi: India has diverted its naval ship INS Airavat for providing relief material to cyclone-hit Madagascar as it stood in solidarity with the island nation.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said the Indian Navy has already launched "Op Vanilla" to help the cyclone-hit nation and has diverted its naval ship to provide relief material to the affected people.

"In this time of national disaster, we stand in solidarity with Madagascar. The

@indiannavy has already launched "Op Vanilla" and urgently diverted INS Airavat to provide support in the relief operations. Our thoughts & prayers are with the people of Madagascar," Singh said in a tweet.

MEA sources said Madagascar has been hit by a cyclone and there has been heavy flooding and landslides since last week, causing loss of lives and displacement of a number of people. According to reports, more than 92,000 people have been affected, they said.

In a tweet on January 25, the president of Madagascar had requested international mobilisation for the national disaster that has struck the country.

As the first respondent, MEA sources said India has decided to immediately divert Indian Navy Ship Airavat, enroute to Seychelles, to Madagascar.

The ship, the sources said, is carrying five pallets each of victualing, clothing and naval stores, along with three pallets of medicines. It can, therefore provide clothing, emergency food,

temporary shelters, medical assistance, carry out transportation and evacuation of personnel using four large and two medium sized boats, diving and communication assistance, they said.

The ship is scheduled to reach Madagascar on 29th January 2020, the sources added.

"Our assistance to Madagascar is in consonance with the prime minister's vision of 'Security and Growth for all in the Region (SAGAR)'," an MEA source said.

first published:January 28, 2020, 22:46 IST