Donald Trump reverses course, supports India’s position on hydroxychloroquine
US President Donald Trump today changed course and supported the Narendra Modi government stand on hydroxychloroquine and ended up praising India’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic.
In an interview to Fox News, Trump said: “ I bought millions of doses. More than 29 million. I spoke to Prime Minister Modi, a lot of it comes out of India. I asked him if he would release it? He was great. He was really good. You know they put a stop because they wanted it for India. But there is a lot of good things coming from that. Lot of people looking at it and saying, you know I don’t hear bad stories, I hear good stories. And I don’t hear anything where it was causing death. So it is not something like….You know we are doing vaccines. Johnson and Johnson, they need to test that. It seems malaria affected counties are unaffected where it is common.”
While President Trump had talked about possible retaliation against India on Monday on hydroxychloroquine, fact is that India had already informed the State Department about the change in drug policy much earlier.
Also Watch | Donald Trump hints at ‘retaliation’ if India withholds hydroxychloroquine exports
“We don’t want to be bracketed with China when the world is facing the pandemic. We have commitments and responsibility to countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and all those who are dependent on Indian drugs,” said a senior government official.
Even as he praised the Indian stand on hydroxychloroquine, President Trump has gone after both WHO and China, virtually accusing them of keeping the world in dark about the epidemic.
He was joined by Senator Jim Risch, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who called for an independent investigation into the WHO handling of the COVID-19 response. He said : “ The WHO has failed not only the American people, it has failed the world with its flagrant mishandling of the response to COVID-19. Dr Tedros Adganom Ghebreyessus’ apparent unwillingness to hold the Chinese Communist Party to even the minimum stand of global health and transparency hindered the world’s ability to blunt the spread of this pandemic. It is completely unacceptable that the world’s global health organization has become a political puppet of the Chinese Government.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also asked for a rebuilding of the WHO in his speech at the G-20 last month as he felt that the 20th century organization needed serious overhauling.
India’s decision to permit export of hydroxychloroquine and other drugs has also been cheered Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. In a letter to PM Modi, President Bolsonaro compared India drug supply to his country as Sanjeevani Booti brought by Lord Hanuman to save life of Lakshman, brother of Lord Ram on Hanuman Jayanti Day.