India Gifts Sri Lanka Life-Saving Medicines To Fight Chinese Virus
In the backdrop of fears of Chinese virus pandemic extending until June end, India today gifted a 10-tonne consignment of essential life saving medicines to Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka is reeling under the virus outbreak with the country regitering six deaths and 180 getting infected. Its first case was detected on March 11.
The consignment of medicines was sent to Sri Lanka by an Air India special charter flight after the neighboring country asked for it.
“This is yet another manifestation of India’s unwavering commitment to stand with Sri Lanka, in rain and in shine. Despite its own domestic challenges and constraints, India has always believed in sharing its resources and expertise with its friends and partners,” the Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka said in a statement.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksha lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government for sending the medicines. “I wish to convey my heartfelt appreciation to Hon PM Narendra Modi, government and people of India for your warm gesture in sending medicines to Sri Lanka on a special chartered flight. Your kind and generous support is deeply appreciated in this hour of need,” he tweeted.
This initiative comes after March 15 SAARC leaders video conference proposed by Modi to combat the pandemic. Modi had pledged USD 10 million to the SAARC COVID-19 Emergency Fund. On March 26, health professionals of SAARC countries also held a video conference.
In a televised address to the nation, Sri Lanka Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa said the government would provide economic relief to people despite the adverse economic prospects looming as a result of the pandemic.
According to a doctors’ union, Sri Lanka could register 2,500 confirmed cases at the peak if the virus is not checked now. If that happens, they feared stretching of health services beyond its capacity.
Sri Lanka, as of now, is observing lockdown with key districts being placed under continuous curfew.