Published On : Wed, Apr 28th, 2021

Covid-19: India declines help from UN

India has declined assistance offered by the United Nations of its integrated supply chain for Covid-19-related material, saying the country has a “robust system” to deal with the required logistics, a spokesperson for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said.

“One of the things we did is we offered the assistance of our integrated supply chain if it was required. We’ve been told at this point that it’s not needed because India has a reasonably robust system to deal with this. But our offer stands, and we’re willing to help in whatever way we can,” Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesman for the UN Chief, said in response to a question by news agency.

On whether any shipments of essential materials from UN agencies are expected to reach India amid the crisis, Haq said, “none have been sought so far, but like I said, we do have people, including our people who deal with operational and logistical issues who are willing to help, if we’re needed, and we’re in touch with our counterparts in India to see whether that will be useful.”

As India battles a crippling surge in COVID-19 infections and deaths, the United Nations has been in touch at various levels with authorities in India. Haq said Chef de Cabinet to the United Nations Secretary-General Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti has been in touch with India’s Permanent Representative to the UN T S Tirumurti over the COVID-19 situation in India and other officials in the system have also been in touch with officials both here in New York and on the ground.

Haq added that the UN is also making sure that its own staff, whether international or national, in India are taken care of so that they don’t place a burden on the healthcare system of India. “And luckily, we’ve maintained a very low level of cases. So, we’ve, I think, been succeeding at trying to do that and making sure that we’re not pressuring a healthcare system that already is facing extreme challenges.