Ex-Goldman Sachs Chief Jim O'Neill Faces Social Media Flak For His Comments On India

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Former Goldman Sachs chief Jim O'Neill has sparked a huge controversy with his remarks questioning India's efficiency to deal with the Coronavirus outbreak.

Written By Digital Desk | Mumbai | Updated On:
Jim O'Neill

Former Goldman Sachs chief Jim O'Neill has sparked a huge controversy with his remarks over Coronavirus after questioning India's efficiency in dealing with the virus outbreak. Jim suggested that the Indian health care system was not capable enough to deal with what the WHO has declared a pandemic. The head of Chatham House said that preventing the spread of the virus would have been almost impossible had it started in India.

Jim O'Neill advises European nations to follow China's example

He also questioned the "the quality of Indian governance" and said there was no way that the country could stave off the spread. He went on to praise the Chinese authorities over the action taken to curb the spread. He added that other countries could learn from the Chinese model.

The former secretary to the Treasury of England went on to advise European countries to follow China's example on handling COVID-19. Some of the European encounters including UK and Italy have seen a rise in the number of virus affected people. In the United Kingdom, 6 people have died due to the virus and recently the Health Minister was tested positive. Italy has been the worst-hit European country with more than 12000 cases and 800 deaths. 

Read: Coronavirus 'worst Public Health Crisis For A Generation': Boris Johnson

The country has seen a steep rise in the number of people being detected positive. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte's government has pledged about 25 billion Euros to fight COVID-19. Except for pharmacies and supermarkets, all other shops have been shut in Italy. 

O'Neil's comments attracted sharp criticism from Twitter users based in India and the UK. One user who recently returned from London claimed that "precautionary measures were much more in place at Indira Gandhi International Airport compared to Heathrow airport". Another user said that "no government could ever claim to have 100% preparations in place to handle a virus spread", suggesting that the Indian government was taking sufficient measures. 

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The British economist, who headed leading think tanks has been criticised for commending China's efforts. Another Twitter user expressed his anger saying "India would have never attempted to hide the problem bad it happened here". The Chinese government has been accused of downplaying the outbreak and stifling news about the potential dangers of the virus spread. Several unverified videos are doing rounds on social media claiming that people found down with virus are ill-treated by authorities there.

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