China offers help to Covid-ridden India
Kolkata, India: China on Friday said it was willing to talk to India regarding what it needs to control the sudden outburst of COVID-19 cases, a day after offering to help New Delhi with necessary support and help, Hindustan Times reported.
The move comes after India last year offered to help China with medicinal supplies and other materials when the outbreak was battering the nation of its origin.
Answering a question for the Hindustan Times newspaper, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said that it is prepared to speak to India about what it can do to help the nation amid crisis.
“China is willing to communicate (on) specific matters with India according to its needs,” the ministry said in a one-line statement in Mandarin to HT.
However, the media outlet said it could not assert whether or not Beijing had made an official offer to assist in battling the Covid-19 and in India with regards to the second outbreak.
On Thursday, Wang Wenbin, a spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said that Beijing was aware that the epidemic in India had become serious, and that there was a temporary shortage of required materials for epidemic prevention.
Wang was reacting to a query from Chinese official media at the daily ministry briefing about China's response to the spreading epidemic in India.
“China is willing to provide the necessary support and help,” Wang had said, without giving details of what such assistance might consist of, HT reported.
“The novel coronavirus is a common enemy of all mankind, and the global community needs to unite as one to fight against epidemics,” he said during the briefing.
Last time India had sent 15 tonnes of medical supplies to China, including masks, gloves, and emergency medical equipment, at a cost of approximately 2.11 crore.
Medical supplies included 100,000 surgical masks, 500,000 pairs of surgical gloves, 75 infusion pumps, 30 enteral feeding pumps, 21 defibrillators, and 4,000 N-95 masks.
A demonic second wave
India is amid what is being called a more disastrous second wave, after witnessing a temporary drop in the number of new cases during the Jan - March time period.
Experts opine allege factors behind the unprecedented spike in new cases, including a false sense of compliance amongst India's political and public spheres that the nation has largely bought the virus under control earlier this year.
India has reported more than four million infections this month, deflating expectations at the start of the year that the pandemic had peaked.
Because of this misguided conviction, the government relaxed its guard, allowing most activity to resume almost normally, including weddings and the admission of spectators to cricket matches.
The massive Kumbh Mela festival, one of the world's largest religious gatherings, held in the city of Haridwar between January and this week, drew an estimated 25 million Hindu pilgrims, most of whom were not wearing masks or social distancing.