India’s commitment to coronavirus fight impressive, says WHO

More than 1,68,000 people have tested positive for the virus and over 6,600 have died across the globe

local transmission, imported cases only, WHO, World Health Organisation, Coronavirus outbreak, coronavirus
A conductor of a state transport bus distributes free masks to passengers to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Photo: PTI

The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Tuesday (March 17) appreciated the Indian government’s commitment to combat the coronavirus, which has claimed the lives of three people in India and infected more than 100.

More than 1,68,000 people have tested positive for the virus in at least 100 countries and over 6,600 have died across the globe.

Henk Bekedam, the WHO representative to India, said while addressing reporters after a meeting with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) praised the apex medical research institute for managing to isolate the strains of ‘SARS-Cov-2’.

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“I think the commitment of the Indian government from the top level — the Prime Minister”s office himself — has been enormous, very impressive. This is one of the reasons why India is doing very well. I am very impressed that everyone has been mobilised,” news agency ANI quoted Bekedam as saying.

“We have very good research capacity in India and especially at the ICMR and the Department of Health Research. They have been able to isolate the virus, (and) now India will continue to be part of the research community,” he added.

Last week, the ICMR had announced that they have been successful in isolating the new strain of coronavirus – the first step towards quickening the process for the development of drugs and vaccines for COVID-19.

India has reported 126 cases of the coronavirus, while 3 people have died so far in the country.

(With inputs from agencies)