As the number of Coronavirus cases surge in the country, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to address the nation and in doing so, Chowdhury attacked the Prime Minister saying, "PM Modi has addressed the SAARC nations but not our own citizens".
"I am saying since many days, PM should address the people soon as things are going out of hand. PM addresses SAARC but not to our own people. If he addresses the nation, it will send out a strong message. I appeal to the PM as thousands are stranded outside India, they should be evacuated at the earliest. It is said that the US is closing all hostels, and routes to come back have also been shut down. Where our students will go? PM should take decision and go to any extent to bring our people back", said Chowdhury while speaking with ANI.
The remarks by Chowdhury come even as PM Modi has addressed the nation previously and on Wednesday chaired a meeting with senior officials to review the ongoing efforts to contain Coronavirus pandemic in India and is scheduled to address the nation at 8 pm on Thursday. In the meeting, PM Modi emphasised on actively engaging with individuals, local communities and organisations in chalking out mechanisms to fight the novel Coronavirus, also known as COVID-19.
He also urged officials and technical experts to deliberate on the steps to be taken next. While the other nations including the developed ones such as Italy and France are under lockdown as nations are in stage three of the COVID-19 outbreak while India has so far managed to restrict it to stage two with the next two weeks said to be critical in containing the virus.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Tuesday praised the Indian government's commitment to combat the novel Coronavirus -- a pandemic which has infected more than 2,19,000 people and killed over 8,900 globally. Speaking to reporters after holding a meeting with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), Henk Bekedam, the WHO Representative to India, commended the apex medical research institute for managing to isolate the strains of SARS-Cov-2.
Government is taking all measures necessary to combat the deadly virus. Thermal screening is being carried out on airports across the country. India has banned all foreigners from entering the country. The Ministry has deployed around 30,000 - 35,000 personnel on community surveillance keeping a close watch.
The government has also allowed private testing facilities to test patients for Coronavirus, besides the already functional government testing facilities. Schools and other educational institutions, malls, cinema halls, pubs, gyms and swimming pools have been shut down in order to prevent the spread of the virus. Also, religious and spiritual places of pilgrimage and worship such as Vaishnodevi, Shirdi's Saibaba temple and Mumbai's Siddhivinayak temple among others have been shut down.
Indians stranded in China, Iran, Italy and other nations have been brought back while efforts are still on to evacuate those who are still stranded in other countries.