A series of unfortunate missteps

  1. In the aftermath of Kerala floods, the Kerala government was prohibited by central government from accessing relief funds from foreign governments directly.
  2. To project itself as a global leader and worthy of permanent membership of UN Security Council India in 2004 decided to discourage inflow of donations from foreign countries and rather increase Indian assistance to other countries.
  3. In 2016 Central government framed rules which allowed acceptance of relief assistance only from individuals and charitable institutions, while cash donations from foreign governments would have to be considered on case to case basis.
  4. Recently India refused to accept relief assistance offered by UAE, Qatar and Maldives for rehabilitation of Kerala as it wanted to mobilise internal resources.
  5. Central government highlighted that arranging resources for country’s development is its own responsibility as per Constitution and states have limited role in accessing loans or funds from international sources like IMF, World Bank etc., though states can demand more resources from center as per need.