Modi proposes SAARC strategy to combat COVID-19

New Delhi: Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic crisis across the globe, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday urged the SAARC nations to chalk out strategy to fight it and set an example to the world.

In a series of tweets, Modi said, “Our planet is battling COVID-19. At various levels, governments and people are trying their best to combat it. South Asia, which is home to a significant number of the global population, should leave no stone unturned to ensure our people are healthy.

“I would like to propose that the leadership of the SAARC nations chalk out a strong strategy to fight coronavirus. We could discuss, via video conferencing, ways to keep our citizens healthy. Together, we can set an example to the world and contribute to a healthier planet,” he said.

His remarks came amid the COVID-19 outbreak, which has hit the health as well as the markets globally. On Thursday, Modi and his British counterpart Boris Johnson in a phone conversation stressed the need to coordinate international efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the government said Modi received a phone call from Johnson on Thursday. The two discussed the ongoing global pandemic that has hit some countries of Europe badly, apart from China, and decided to coordinate efforts to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

Modi also expressed concern over UK Health Minister Nadine Dorries testing positive for coronavirus and wished her a speedy recovery.

Both the leaders also agreed to further strengthen India-UK strategic partnership through the new decade. They concurred that it would be useful to formulate a comprehensive roadmap for the next ten years towards the objective of strengthening ties.

The leaders expressed their satisfaction at the cooperation between India and the UK in the field of climate change, especially with reference to the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).

On Thursday, India witnessed its first coronavirus death in Karnataka. State Health Minister B. Sriramulu confirmed that a 76-year-old man from Kalaburgi in the state’s northern region died of Covid-19. The Union Health Ministry on Friday confirmed 75 coronavirus cases till 10 a.m. on its official website.


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