At World Health Assembly, India expresses dismay over WHO's excess mortality report

According to the report, there were 4.7 million Covid deaths in India -- 10 times the official figure and almost a third of Covid deaths globally.
The headquarters of the World Health Organisation in Geneva. (Photo | AFP)
The headquarters of the World Health Organisation in Geneva. (Photo | AFP)

NEW DELHI: India expressed its disappointment over the manner the World Health Organisation (WHO) prepared and published its report on its estimate of 47 lakh excess deaths due to Covid-19, disregarding authentic official data, said Union Health Minister Dr Mansukh Mandaviya at the 75th World Health Assembly in Geneva.

Speaking at the WHO headquarters, the minister said, “it is with a sense of dismay and concern that India notes WHO’s recent exercise on all-cause excess mortality where our country-specific authentic data published by the statutory authority has not been taken into account.”

On May 5, WHO released a report that, according to its estimates, India’s death toll was nearly ten times higher than India’s official count of 4.8 lakh Covid-19 deaths during the last two years. The government has slammed the report, saying it is unacceptable as the estimates are drawn from flawed mathematical assumptions.

The minister also said that the Central Council of Health and Family Welfare, a constitutional body having a representation of health ministers from all Indian states, have passed a unanimous resolution asking him to convey their collective disappointment and concern in this regard.

India firmly believes that WHO has a central role in achieving the goal of health for all in an objective and result-oriented manner, he added.

“It should be our collective endeavour to ensure that WHO is fit for dealing with contemporary realities. India has always constructively contributed to making WHO reflect the aspirations of the Member States and that Member States must drive its processes,” the minister said.

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