The Indian government is ready to release Rs 500 crore (Rs.5 billion) to Sri Lanka if needed for the rehabilitation of Tamils affected by the internal strife there, Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram said on Sunday.
"The Indian government has already announced financial assistance of Rs.500 crore for the rehabilitation of the Sri Lankan Tamil refugees. We are ready to sanction a similar amount if needed," he told reporters.
Chidambaram met Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi at his residence on Sunday and discussed the report submitted by MPs of the ruling alliance after their visit to Sri Lankan Tamil refugee camps.
According to Chidambaram, the union cabinet will discuss the suggestions made by the Karunanidhi government.
He said around 5,000 Tamils have been sent back to their original places of residence after the trip of the Indian MPs.