Even as the southern Indian state of Kerala comes to grips with the horrific floods that hit the state last week, the silver lining in the tragedy is about the way the UAE is standing by God’s Own Country in its hour of need. Indians and non-Indians from across the UAE and indeed, the GCC, have come together to collect relief materials and make donations to those in need. From the rulers to government official to top industrialists and even the common man, they have all come together to contribute generously to the cause.
- HH Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai’s Touching Tweet
On Saturday 18 August, HH Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, expressed his concern for the flood-victims in Kerala through a series of tweets and announced the launch of a relief campaign. The tweets were posted in English and in the official language of Kerala, Malayalam. The ruler of Dubai said, “The people of Kerala have always been and are still part of our success story in the UAE. We have a special responsibility to help and support those affected, especially during this holy and blessed days.” “The state of Kerala in India is currently witnessing huge floods, the most devastating in a century. Hundreds have been killed, hundreds of thousands have been displaced. Ahead of Eid Al Adha, do not forget to extend a helping hand to our brothers in India,” he also tweeted.
- UAE Leaders’ Healing Touch
The President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s instructions led to the formation of a national emergency committee to provide relief assistance to people affected by flash floods in the Indian state of Kerala. According to Sheikh Khalifa's instructions, the committee is chaired by the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC), and include representatives from the UAE's humanitarian organisations.
- Dar Al-Bar Society’s One Million Dirhams Donation for Relief Activities
Dar Al-Bar Society announced a donation of one million dirhams towards relief activities for the flood victims in the state of Kerala in India, affirming its active and increased participation in the state’s relief activities. Khalfan Khalifa Al Mazrouei, Chairman of the Board, said: "Dar Al Ber has launched its direct field operations to raise funds and aid for the Indian state as part of the UAE Humanitarian Relief Campaign launched by the UAE under the guidance and leadership of the UAE Red Crescent Authority. The aim of the emergency relief campaign is to reduce the impact of human and material losses incurred in the past few days through providing food, essentials and livelihood.”
- Industrialists Chip In
Indian-origin billionaire businessmen based in the UAE too have made huge contributions. According to media reports, they have announced Rs 125 million donation for flood relief operations. This includes Kerala-born businessman Yusuff Ali MA, chairman and managing director of Lulu Group who announced an INR 50 million donation for Kerala. K.P. Hussain, chairman of Fathima Healthcare Group donated INR 50 million out of which INR 10 million would go directly to the Kerala chief minister’s relief fund, while the rest will be allocated for medical relief aid, added some reports. Billionaire B.R. Shetty, chairman of Unimoni and UAE Exchange, pledged INR 20 million. Azad Moopen, Indian physician and philanthropist, and founder chairman and managing director of Aster DM Healthcare, also pledged INR 5 million
- Group Efforts and Relief Material collection
A group called the Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre here in the UAE has set up a check system to give as much real-time data on the situation in various parts of Kerala and create an audio-visual bridge. Along with this, there are plenty of groups who have come together to collect relief material and send them to Kerala. Groups like Malayali Mums Association, Anbodu Dubai, Dubai KMCC are just a few of them who are doing stellar work in organising collection of relief materials, giving timely information about the situation back home and ensuring that help is reaching where it’s needed the most.