Pakistan to take part in India-led initiative on COVID-19 crisis | India News
New Delhi: Pakistan will take part in India-led initiative on the COVID-19 crisis and the meet at the official level, primarily health experts, will focus on the exchange of good practices to deal with the crisis. Many of the countries who have been invited are members of the SAARC grouping.
In March 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for a SAARC meet on the COVID-19 pandemic. The meet saw all the SAARC heads of govt and state taking part barring Pakistan. Pakistan was present at a junior level at the meeting. One of the key outcomes of the meet was the establishment of the SAARC emergency fund, with India contributing USD 10 million to it.
Amid the pandemic, India reached out to many countries in the region with medicines and other aid. It sent 75,000 MT of food aid to Afghanistan via Chabahar, medical equipment, and other related things like masks to Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh. Under Mission Sagar 1, while it reached out to 5 countries in the Indian Ocean–Maldives, Mauritius, Madagascar, Comoros, and Seychelles by sending medicines and food aid.
In 2021, India gifted COVID-19 vaccines to countries in the region. These nations are–Bangladesh (20 lakh doses), Myanmar (17 lakh doses), Nepal (10 lakh), Bhutan (1.5 lakh), the Maldives (1 lakh), Mauritius (1 lakh), Seychelles (50,000), Sri Lanka (5 lakh), and Afghanistan (5 lakh). This is additional to many countries in Latin America, CARICOM that New Delhi reached out.