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Dubai: Major newspapers in Kerala thanked the UAE for their support to the people of the South Indian state, that has been reeling from the devastation caused by floods since earlier this month.

Torrential rains pounded much of the state for days beginning August 8, resulting in more than 40 per cent rainfall than normal.

The floods have claimed at least 400 lives and displaced more than a million residents.

Following the order of UAE leaders to extend all possible help to Kerala, and a telephone exchange between His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, UAE residents were quick to their feet to help.

The Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) and community organisations across the country immediately rallied efforts and sent expedited shipments of relief goods to flood-hit Keralites. Many also donated cash to the ERC.

Major broadsheets from Kerala, which are also circulated in the UAE, lauded this benevolent initiative and thanked the UAE leadership and its people for their generosity on behalf of the people of Kerala.

Malayala Manorama, the leading Malayalam newspaper, in a full-page spread said: “For holding our hands, for wiping our tears, for being with us, thank you. Kerala salutes UAE.”

The word “Nanni, UAE” or “Thank You, UAE” in Malayalam cut across the entire front page of the Mathrubhumi, a national daily in Malayalam.

In a note of gratitude, the editorial read: “And when you thank someone from the bottom of your heart, we believe you should do it in your mother tongue. On behalf of the state of Kerala, we at Mathrubhumi would like to thank the wise leaders of the UAE for forming a National Emergency Committee and extending every support to us in our hour of need.

“Your selflessness and compassion in the Year of Zayed will never be forgotten.”

Gulf Madhyamam, the first international Indian newspaper, expressed similar sentiments.

“We, the people of Kerala, will never forget the support and kindness extended by the wise rulers of the UAE during the grave situation going on in Kerala. This act of humanity and kindness is the greatest gift we received in the Year of Zayed,” the message read.

Middle East Chandrika, another Malayalam daily, also expressed thanks. In a front-page message, it said that the UAE has been by their side from time immemorial. In this particular instance, the UAE stepped in with a helping hand and wiped out people’s tears. “Your hearts were as rich as your land. Thank you, UAE.”

Another newspaper, the Siraj News Daily, said: “We thank the UAE for forming a committee to help the flood-hit people in Kerala. We express our gratitude and respect to the UAE.”

The daily also published details on how to donate to the Kerala flood relief through the ERC bank accounts and through the SMS donation hotlines of du and etisalat.