Islamabad [Pakistan], September 21 (ANI): Pakistan's rejection of Bangladeshi aid amid devastating floods and heavy monsoons, has set off a heated debate in the cash-strapped country.
Pakistan reportedly rejected Bangladesh's offer to supply humanitarian aid worth Tk1.4 crore (roughly USD 145,000) after the recent floods and heavy monsoons wreaked havoc in the country and further exacerbated its economic situation, according to media reports.
Pakistan Army is reportedly averse to the proposal of aid from Bangladesh as any such relief assistance may undermine Pakistan's global image.
Taking any help from a country that was once part of Pakistan could be embarrassing for the Pak Army which still denies the genocide perpetrated by it against Bangladesh in 1971, Bangladesh Live News reported.
UN relief agencies on Tuesday said millions of people in Pakistan are still deeply affected by catastrophic flooding which "is not going anywhere".
Close to eight million people have been displaced by the disaster and the UN along with the authorities and partners have continued to race to reach affected populations with desperately needed relief items.
Echoing the deep concern among first responders, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, noted that 7.6 million people in Pakistan have been displaced by the floods, with nearly 600,000 living in relief sites.
Writing for The Nation, columnist Shafqat Ali argued that Pakistan is going through the worst period in history amid devastating floods but aid from Bangladesh is not what Islamabad is ready to accept for valid reasons.
Amid efforts to overcome the effects of the unprecedented crisis, Pakistan has received massive support from across the world in cash and kind.
Bangladesh also tried to come forward but Pakistan cannot forget the continuous fiery speeches against Islamabad by the Bangladesh leaders.
"How can we accept aid from them? Don't you remember what they say in the UN and elsewhere? They abuse us and claims to have defeated us in 1971. When they are making such statements, it will be against our honour to accept their aid. Our integrity is more important," a senior Pakistani diplomat was quoted as saying by The Nation.
The diplomat said there was a consensus that the Bangladesh aid should not be accepted as Pakistan wishes to manage the issue with the help of its friends. (ANI)