India seeks World Bank, ADB help to rebuild Uttarakhand

New Delhi, July 2 (IANS) India has sought financial and technical assistance from the multilateral development agencies, especially the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to help rebuild infrastructure in flood ravaged Uttarakhand.

A finance ministry statement said Tuesday that it has decided to seek “external assistance from the multilateral development banks like Asian Development Bank and the World Bank for rebuilding of damaged infrastructure in the state”.

“In view of the emergency situation, both ADB and the World Bank have been requested to fast track the processes of needs assessment, project preparation and approval,” the finance ministry said.

Senior finance ministry officials held meetings here with representatives of the World Bank and the ADB to discuss the possible areas of cooperation.

The federal government will take the loan and pass it on to the state government as 90 percent grant and 10 percent loan, as Uttarakhand is a “special category state”.

Hundreds died after a cloudburst and humongous floods ravaged Uttarakhand some two weeks ago.

The state has suffered extensive damage to physical infrastructure like roads, bridges, embankments and public and private buildings.

“The task of reconstruction and rebuilding the infrastructure would require a huge quantum of funds,” the finance ministry said without giving any specific data.

A joint team of the finance ministry officials led by additional secretary in the department of economic affairs Shaktikanta Das and representatives of the ADB and the World Bank are scheduled to visit Uttarakhand soon to access the situation.

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