New Delhi, Mar 24: Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday targeted Narendra Modi-led Union government, saying the country should have taken the Coronavirus threat more seriously.
Mr Gandhi, while tagging a tweet by a doctor who complained the lack of Personnel Protection Equipment (PPE), including N95 masks and Hazmat suits, a mandatory for doctors and other medical staffs to treat a Coronavirus patient, said he is feeling sad.
'I am feeling sad, because this was completely avoidable. We had time to prepare. We should have taken this threat much more seriously and have been much better prepared,' he tweeted.
Mr Gandhi, who has been criticising the government continuously for not taking enough measures to contain the spread of Coronavirus, had slammed the government for delaying the ban on export of ventilators and surgical masks.
Respected Prime Minister, why did the government allow the export of ventilators and surgical masks till March 19, contrary to the advice of WHO to keep adequate stock of these things? Who were the forces behind it? Is not this criminal conspiracy", he had tweeted on Monday.
AICC communication in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala has also crticised the government for not providing adequate protection for doctors, saying, ' Dear Prime Minister, this is wrong with your strategy to fight COVID-19'.
'Doctors-Nurses-Health Workers don't need mere 'taali' mention, but ‘'protection' of N-95 masks, Hazmat Suits/shields, gloves/goggles, shoe covers'.
While sharing media reports that health workers face protective gear shortage and manufactures blames government for it, Mr Surjewala said the 'government is criminally culpable of not defining 'specifications' of Personal Protection Equipment for Doctors-Health Workers between February 1 – March 2, 2020, and permitting export of PPE material, masks, ventilators until 19th March'.
In India, according to the government agencies, confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 482.
Rebutting the Congress' claims, the Centre said a total lockdown has been announced in 19 states and union territories. On the other hand, 6 states and union territories have placed only some areas under lockdown. (UNI)