Dark clouds loomed large over India after nearly 55,000 new coronavirus cases have been reported in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number to 16,38,870 in India.
As the COVID-19 outbreak is quickly spreading across the globe, no country has been spared by this deadly disease. The population of India is over 1.3 billion at present and it is true that there is a scarcity of medical equipment like testing kits, ventilators in the time of crisis. India, at the moment, is seeing a shortage of testing kits and other medical equipment.
Amid this situation of crisis, here is some good news to give you a sigh of relief. Now, France has become the first country to provide ventilators, test kits and other medical equipment to India as part of its assistance in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The medical equipment was handed over to the Indian Red Cross Society by French Ambassador to India Emmanuel Lenain at the Palam Air Force Station after the assistance material was flown here on board a French Air Force aircraft.
“Delighted to hand over COVID-19 medical equipment from France to Shri RK Jain, Secy General @IndianRedCross,” Lenain tweeted along with pictures of the handover.
“France earlier granted 200 million euros in financial aid to India through @AFD_en (French development agency). With @IFCCI1 CSR committee, French companies, too, have contributed to relief efforts in India,” he said.
The relation between India and France have traditionally been close and friendly and both countries have a ‘special relationship’ with each other. Defence and strategic ties between India and France have been on an upswing in the last few years. The deal with France for the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets has strengthened bilateral defence cooperation.
Indian government sources said France is giving medical equipment and expertise to India for its response to the Covid-19 pandemic. France is helping India with medical equipment at the same time as the first five of 36 Rafale fighter jets have arrived in India.
The material being provided by France includes 50 Osiris 3 ventilators, 70 Yuwell 830 ventilators with BiPAP mode, 50,000 serological tests (IgM/IgG Duo test kits by Biosensor) and 50,000 nose and throat swabs, the sources said.
Osiris ventilators are particularly useful for emergency transport, intra-hospital transfer and recovery. They have different ventilation modes, including non-invasive ventilation.
Indian Red Cross Society and ICMR will get ventilators and test kits respectively, the Indian government sources said. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has received a letter from French President Emmanuel Macron in which he has expressed France’s solidarity with India amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The India-France partnership will be even more crucial in the post-pandemic scenario including in the domain of humanitarian assistance, the sources said.