he Congress on Thursday demanded the resignation of External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Union Health Ministry Harsh Vardhan as according to the party they have failed to fulfill their responsibilities in dealing with the second wave of COVID-19.
Addressing a virtual press conference here, Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate said the foreign aid to deal with the COVID-19 crisis, have started arriving in India from April 26 onwards but the protocols or SOPs for their usage and distribution were formulated only on May 2.
“During these days, the aid kept lying and we lost over 26,000 more lives from the coronavirus,” Ms Shrinate claimed and blamed the foreign minister for the late response.
She said the aid was even arbitrarily distributed as Lady Hardinge Medical College and Hospital in Delhi was given 260 oxygen concentrators, much more than their need.
“The foreign minister is busy replying to trolls on social media but doesn’t have time to deal with the pandemic. He has reduced the prestige of his office and position,” the Congress leader alleged.
She highlighted that the international media in now writing about the COVID-19 mismanagement in India and questioned who was responsible for bringing this shame to the country.
Mr Jaishankar in a recent interview accepted that the health infrastructure of the country has collapsed, she said but added that the minister, instead of holding the ruling NDA responsible for the crisis, has put the blame on previous dispensations for adequacies in the health system.
“What were you doing in the last seven years,” she asked.
The Congress leader alleged that no one knows where Mr Vardhan is in this hour of crisis.
“Where is our health minister? A few months ago, he was promoting Baba Ramdev’s Coronil and self-proclaimed that the pandemic is over,” Ms Shrinate alleged.
She recalled the “Bend it like Beckham” phrase allegedly stated by Mr Vardhan over the fattening of the COVID-19 graph during the first wave when the cases have dropped.
Ms Shrinate claimed that it took seven days for the health ministry to accept the double mutant virus prevailing in India despite the scientist giving the evidence.
Over post-poll violence in West Bengal, she questioned the need for a central team being rushed to the eastern state.
“We condemn any kind of violence but want to ask Mr Modi why he has sent a team to Bengal. Does he has no faith in police or judiciary,” she questioned.
She also criticised the ongoing construction of the multi-crore central vista project in central Delhi and asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to immediately halt the project.