NEW DELHI: As the number of cases crossed 80 in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday urged the leadership of the SAARC nations to chalk out a strategy to fight the spread of the deadly virus.
“I would like to propose that the leadership of SAARC nations chalk out a strong strategy to fight coronavirus. We could discuss, via video conferencing, ways to keep our citizens healthy,” he tweeted.
The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation has India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka as its members.
I would like to propose that the leadership of SAARC nations chalk out a strong strategy to fight Coronavirus.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 13, 2020
We could discuss, via video conferencing, ways to keep our citizens healthy.
Together, we can set an example to the world, and contribute to a healthier planet.
In another tweet, the PM said, “South Asia, which is home to a significant number of the global population, should leave no stone unturned to ensure that the people are healthy. Our planet is battling the COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus. At various levels, governments and people are trying their best to combat it.”
Leaders of several nations welcomed the initiative and expressed willingness to work to deal with the spread of the virus.
“This is what we call leadership. As members of this region, we must come together in such times. Smaller economies are hit harder, so we must coordinate. With your leadership, I have no doubt we will see immediate and impactful outcome. Looking forward to the video conference,” Bhutan’s PM Lotay Tshering tweeted. Nepalese PM KP Sharma Oli also took to Twitter welcoming the idea “advanced by Prime Minister Modiji”.
I welcome the idea advanced by Prime Minister Modiji @narendramodi for chalking out a strong strategy by the leadership of the SAARC nations to fight Coronavirus. My government is ready to work closely with SAARC Member States to protect our citizens from this deadly disease.— KP Sharma Oli (@PM_Nepal) March 13, 2020
“My government is ready to work closely with SAARC Member States to protect our citizens from this deadly disease,” he said. Similar interests were expressed by Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Bangladesh deputy foreign minister Shahriar Alam.