Modi not to attend G7 Summit in person in view of Covid situation

at 8:40 pm
PM Narendra Modi and UK PM Boris Johnson (File Pic)

New Delhi (NVI): With the Covid situation remaining extremely bad in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has decided not to attend in person the G-7 Summit scheduled to be held in Cornwall in United Kingdom from June 11 to 13.

“While appreciating the invitation to the Prime Minister by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to attend the G7 Summit as a Special Invitee, given the prevailing COVID situation, it has been decided that the Prime Minister will not attend the G-7 Summit in person,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said here this evening.

Bagchi did not elaborate but there may be a possibility of Modi attending it virtually.

Johnson had invited PM Modi to attend the meet, which will be the first in-person G-7 summit in almost two years.

However, the Covid situation in India is extremely bad with lakhs of people getting infected and thousands dying every day. There is also an acute crisis on account of inadequate medical essentials like oxygen and hospital beds.

UK, the current Chair of the grouping of most industrialised leaders, had invited Modi along with the leaders of Australia and South Korea as guest countries to “deepen the expertise and experience around the table.”

The UK Prime Minister’s “ambition is to use the G7 to intensify cooperation between the world’s democratic and technologically advanced nations. Between them the 10 leaders represent over 60% of the people living in democracies around the world,” according to a statement issued by the British High Commission in January.

The High Commission had also said the invitation to India, Australia and South Korea was a testament to the UK’s commitment to ensuring multilateral institutions better reflect today’s world.

“The UK was the first P5 member to support a permanent UNSC seat for India and the first G7 member to invite India to a G7 Summit in 2005. As current BRICS President and G20 President in 2023, India will play a key role driving in multilateral cooperation helping to build back better around the world,” the BHC had said.