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COVID-19 | Lifesaving drugs should be made available to Indians first: Rahul Gandhi

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. | File

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. | File   | Photo Credit: R.V. Moorthy

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala terms Trump language ‘unwarranted’

Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday made an indirect reference to United States President Donald Trump's ‘retaliation’ comment on export of anti-malarial drug hydroxycloroquine by India by stating ‘friendship is not about retaliation’.

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Mr. Gandhi took to Twitter to argue that Indians have the first right over life-saving medicines during the coronavirus [pandemic].

“Friendship isn’t about retaliation. India must help all nations in their hour of need but life-saving medicines should be made available to Indians in ample quantities first,” Mr. Gandhi said.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala noted that the Congress valued and cherished India’s friendship with the U.S., but termed Mr. Trump’s language as “unwarranted”.

“Pradhan Mantri ji, India can neither be threatened nor can it bow down before anyone. Today, in the battle against COVID-19 by the 130 crore Indians, what is most important is the availability of life-saving drugs like hydroxycloroquine,” Mr. Surjewala said at an official press conference, through videoconferencing.

Allowing the export of hydroxycloroquine by bowing down before a foreign power cannot be in national interest. “Modi ji, we request you with folded hands to adopt India and Indians first policy. The government should think deeply about the export of essential medicines, as our citizens have the first right over them”, he said.

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Printable version | Jun 2, 2020 6:48:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/covid-19-lifesaving-drugs-should-be-made-available-to-indians-first-rahul-gandhi/article31277208.ece

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