‘Churlish’: Gambhir slams Pak’s ‘Kashmir’ reference during Covid-19 conference
Former Indian cricketer and BJP MP Gautam Gambhir lashed out at Pakistan for allegedly raising the issue of Kashmir during a video conference of Saarc leaders chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday evening to coordinate regional efforts to contain COVID 19.
Gambhir termed Pakistan’s behaviour “churlish” in a tweet on Sunday and added sarcastically that it “showed” Islamabad’s “commitment” to fighting this global pandemic. He advised Pakistan to first attend to cries of help from its “own people” in danger zones.
“Pak’s churlish behaviour in a video conference of #SAARC leaders for a humanitarian cause, shows its commitment to fighting this global pandemic #CoronavirusOutbreak. Instead of our Kashmir, it should first think about its own people crying for help from danger zones!,” Gambhir tweeted.
ALSO WATCH | Coronavirus: Pakistan minister raises J&K at SAARC meet; Gautam Gambhir slams
Pakistan was reported by news agency PTI to have sought lifting of alleged “lockdown” in Jammu and Kashmir in the view of “the health emergency” due to coronavirus.
“Equity in health is a fundamental principle of public health. In this regard, let me say that it is a matter of concern that COVID-19 has been reported” from Jammu and Kashmir and in view of the health emergency, it is imperative that all “lockdown” there must be lifted immediately, “Opening up communication and movement would facilitate dissemination of information, allow distribution of medical supplies and allow containment...to proceed unimpeded,” Special Assistant to Pakistani Prime Minister on Health Mirza was quoted as saying by PTI.
The video conference was held on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiative and it was praised by all heads of state who were personally present at the conference.
PM Modi offered to set up an emergency fund to aid in the south Asian grouping’s fight against the coronavirus and said New Delhi was willing to announce an initial contribution of $10m to the corpus which could be replenished voluntarily by member nations, several of whom are very small economies.
Modi also offered assistance through a rapid response team comprised of medical experts and high tech equipment which could be deployed at the request of any member nation in emergencies. He also offered to share a virus tracking software which could help the containment efforts of all countries in the region.
India’s offer was welcomed by the heads of the state in the conference.
Gambhir said it was a reflection of PM Modi’s “leadership” and New Delhi’s efforts had been lauded internationally.
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