On Monday, April 12, Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the current situation of COVID-19 cases in the country.
In the letter written by Sonia Gandhi, she said, “I have had a detailed interaction with Chief Ministers of States ruled by the Congress Party and Ministers from alliance governments. I would like to highlight three issues that came up for your consideration & appropriate action.”
Sonia Gandhi highlighted these three main points in her letter:
- Vaccines are our foremost hope. Sadly, most of the states are left with a stock of just 3 to 5 days. While it will be necessary on one hand to substantially ramp up our domestic production capacity, it will also be prudent to allow emergency use authorization of all the vaccine candidates that have the required clearances, without any further delay. Accordingly, with enhanced availability, categories eligible for vaccination should be expanded on the basis of need and exposure rather than age. In the same vein, the numbers allocated to state has to be based on the prevalence and projection of infection in that particular state.
- All equipments, instruments, medicines and support infrastructure required to deal with the Covid-19 crisis should be made completely exempt from GST. Even ventilators, oximeters and oxygen cylinders presently attract GST as do key life -saving drugs like Remdesivir and Dexamethazone.
- As, we move ahead to control the situation by restoring to curfews, travel restrictions, closures and lockdowns, we will again be restricting economic activity that will hit the already beleagured people especially the poor and daily wages very hard. It is with all earnestness that I appeal to you to put into place the much needed scheme of minimum monthly guaranteed income in place and transfer an amount of Rs 6,000/- in every eligible citizen’s account. An also for reverse migration of labour, it is critical to immediately address their needs of safe and seamless transportation.
In the last 24 hours, India reported 1,68,912 new COVID-19 cases and reached the milestone of highest single day surge and 75,086 patients got discharge, while 904 people died of this deadly virus. Total active cases in India is now around 12 lakhs.
Maharashtra continues to be the worst affected state in the country followed by Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka.