These are part of India’s people-centric development partnership initiatives in Sri Lanka

India continued with its humanitarian assistance initiatives in Sri Lanka by launching a special programme for fishermen and their fanilies in the country's Northern Province on Sunday.

An artificial limb fitment camp was also inaugurated in Jaffna.

Nearly 1200 families spread across Jaffna, Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi and Mannar shall receive food materials and other essential domestic supplies under the humanitarian assistance programme being carried out under grant assistance by Government of India.

Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay inaugurated the humanitarian assistance programme along with Sri Lankan Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda in Jaffna, a statement by the Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka said.

Beneficiaries in Jaffna District were handed over these materials during the inauguration and distribution of materials in other parts of the Province shall be carried out in the coming days, the statement informed.

Speaking at the event, Indian High Commissioner Baglay underlined that India was a brotherly country which cared for the people of Sri Lanka and mentioned that India would continue to extend such humanitarian assistance in the future too, the statement further said.

He also said that both Government of India and Government of Sri Lanka were working together towards addressing the issues faced by fishing communities of both countries, it added.

Emphasizing the need for keeping traditions alive, he thanked the leadership of Sri Lanka including Fisheries Minister Devananda for facilitating the visit of Indian fishermen and other pilgrims to the Annual Festival at St. Anthony’s shrine in Kachchateevu, the Indian High Commission statement noted.

Thanking the Government of India for the humanitarian assistance programme, Minister Devananda said that the number of Indian pilgrims for the festival would be in thousands next year, it mentioned.

The Indian High Commissioner also inaugurated an artificial limb fitment camp in Jaffna held by Bhagwan Mahaveer Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS), the world’s largest organisation for persons with physical disabilities in terms of fitment of artificial limbs and other related aids.

The camp, which is fully supported by Government of India, is being held in collaboration with Jaffna District Development Committee (DDC).

Sri Lankan Member of Parliament Angajan Ramanathan, Chairman of Jaffna DDC graced the occasion.

The artificial limb fitment camp in Jaffna follows a similar Government of India-supported BMVSS camp in Gampaha organized in partnership with Ranaviru Seva Authority, the Indian High Commission's statement added.

This camp which primarily catered to Sri Lanka Armed Services personnel provided various services such as the Jaipur foot to more than 500 persons with locomotor disabilities, the statement noted.

It may also be recalled that Government of India had organized two camps in Vavuniya and Jaffna in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

These camps had jointly catered to more than 2500 persons, the Indian High Commission said.

Northern Province is a region of focus under Government of India’s people-centric development partnership initiatives in Sri Lanka.

A number of projects cutting across diverse aspects of daily human lives such as housing, education, health, livelihood development and industrial development, among others have been implemented here.

Several other projects are at various stages of implementation, the Indian High Commission statement added.