The Congress on Friday (May 7) stepped up its efforts to pressurise the Centre to launch a collective action against COVID, besides offering a slew of suggestions. India on Thursday (May 6) recorded 4.14 lakh new infections, with the country’s caseload crossing over 2.14 crore, including 36 lakh active cases, 1.76 crore recoveries and 2.34 lakh deaths.
Rahul Gandhi offered four suggestions: scientifically track the virus and its mutations using genome sequencing; assess all vaccines against new mutations; rapidly vaccinate the population and keep the world informed of the findings.
He said the government’s failures in containing the pandemic had made “another devastating national lockdown almost inevitable”. This was Rahul’s second letter to the Prime Minister on the pandemic issue.
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At a meeting of the Congress Parliamentary Party on May 7, party chief Sonia Gandhi said, “The Covid battle transcends political differences and everyone has to fight it together as a nation. The Modi government must urgently call an all-party meeting. Standing committees must be convened to ensure collective action and accountability to combat the pandemic better.”
Rahul, in his letter to Modi, said, “Your government’s lack of a clear and coherent COVID and vaccination strategy has placed India in a highly dangerous position. It’s important to understand India’s responsibility in a globalised and interconnected world given that India is “home to one out of every six human beings on the planet”.
“The pandemic has demonstrated that our size, genetic diversity and complexity make India a fertile ground for the virus to rapidly mutate, transforming itself into a more contagious and more dangerous form. The double and triple mutant strains that we are currently grappling with are only the beginning, I fear,” Rahul said.
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Sonia, meanwhile, addressing her party MPs for the first time since the election results to four states and a Union territory, said: “The CWC will meet soon to review the outcome. We as a party must draw appropriate lessons from this setback in polls with humility and honesty.” On the Congress’ performance in the recent polls, she said, “Disappointing.”