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No place for complacency in the fight against COVID-19: Modi

President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the new council of Ministers, in New Delhi. Twitter/@narendramodi

President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the new council of Ministers, in New Delhi. Twitter/@narendramodi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday urged his Council of Ministers, both newly sworn in and those part of his government, that there was no place for complacency in the fight against COVID-19 with a single mistake having far reaching consequences for the country. He was addressing the Ministers via video conferencing in their first such meeting after taking oath of office on Wednesday.

Government sources said India was powering ahead in its fight against the pandemic along with the efforts of health workers and other “Corona warriors” but scenes of over crowding and markets teeming with people without masks or social distancing was “not a pleasant sight” and “should instil a sense of fear”.

Also read: List of Ministers and their portfolios in Narendra Modi's cabinet

He said India’s vaccination and testing rates were high but surging infections in many European countries should instil caution in India too and urged the Ministers to stress on COVID-appropriate behaviour. He expressed concern at the rising cases of COVID-19 in Kerala and Maharashtra in the last few days.

He also asked the new Ministers to learn from their predecessors even those who had been dropped in Wednesday’s massive rejig.

Mr. Modi had dropped 12 Ministers before the swearing in of 43 (new and old) members on Wednesday in what is being seen as a massive redrawing of the government. These 12 Ministers included Harshvardhan (Health), Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ (Education), Ravi Shankar Prasad (Law) and Prakash Javadekar (Environment).

“He told the new Ministers that those no longer part of the government have made contributions and newcomers can learn from them,” a source present at the meeting said.

He also told them that they should reach office on time and channelise their energies on ministerial work and that the focus should be to reach out to the last person standing in the queue.

He cautioned them from going after publicity and media visibility at the cost of work, saying “unnecessary statements should be avoided”.


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Printable version | May 28, 2022 1:22:31 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/no-place-for-complacency-in-the-fight-against-covid-19-modi/article35223973.ece