India-Madagascar: India to provide assistance to drought-hit Madagascar

On March 1, 2020 India announced that it will deliver a consignment of 1,000 metric tonnes of rice and 100,000 tablets of Hydroxychloroquine as a humanitarian assistance to the drought-hit Madagascar in line with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of SAGAR.

Highlights

The humanitarian assistance will be delivered by the Indian Naval Ship Jalashwa. This ship will be sent on March 3, 2021 containing food and medical assistance. It will reach the Port of Ehoala, Madagascar in between March 21 and March 24. This consignment is being sent to the Madagascar after the government of Madagascar appealed for the international solidarity and assistance to tackle the humanitarian crisis in South of Madagascar. INS Jalashwa will also carry an Indian Naval training team which will be deployed in Madagascar for the purpose of capacity building and training of Malagasy Special Forces for two weeks.

Humanitarian Crisis in Madagascar

The southern part of Madagascar is undergoing the challenge of drought for the three consecutive years. The drought has damaged the harvests and has hampered access to food for the people amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Hunger has increased in the southern Madagascar because of drought. According to the World Food Programme (WFP), the “famine-like conditions” in southern Madagascar have increased the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance by two folds, to more than 1.3 million.

India-Madagascar Relation

India has always come forward to provide humanitarian assistance tot e Madagascar. India had sent a consignment of 1,000 metric tonnes of rice in September 2018 which was delivered through the Indian Naval vessel to Madagascar. Further, Indian Navy was the first who respond when Cyclone Diane had made its fall in Madagascar. The army’s carried its assistance programme under the “Operation Vanilla” by INS Airavat in January 2020. Later, INS Shardul reached to the port of Antisiranana and delivered 600 tonnes of rice as HADR assistance to Madagascar to tackle the heavy floods in the Northern Madagascar in March 2020.

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