The European Commission has responded to Indian monsoon floods in Assam by providing €2 million to assist people who have been most affected by the recent disaster.
The aid is expected to reach around 80,000 victims, and will especially target the most vulnerable, such as low caste groups and tribal and religious minorities.
Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva, responsible for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response stated: "The floods came at a particularly bad time just before the harvest. And the monsoon season is not yet at its peak. Crops have been destroyed and in many cases people have also lost their homes and livestock, which further threatens their very survival. With this gesture of European solidarity we will be helping the most vulnerable families in the worst-affected districts to survive this dreadful blow."
EU funded relief efforts will target the most affected districts of Assam – Barpata, Golaghat, Jorhat and Sonitpur. The funds will be channelled through the Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) department which will work through its partners (international non-government organisations, UN agencies and the Red Cross family) to undertake cash-for-work programmes. These will provide the most vulnerable families with extra income to buy food, improve their diet and get them back on their feet. The money will also provide emergency flood-resistant shelter, safe drinking water, sanitation and mosquito nets to prevent the spread of water-borne diseases.
The floods in Assam, the worst in many years, are estimated to have affected over two million people. Since June, the heavy monsoon rains have caused the River Brahmaputra and its tributaries to overflow, flooding thousands of hectares of crop land and destroying many houses. Over a hundred people are reported dead and several hundred thousand have been displaced.