US Defence Secretary directs Pentagon to help India in tackling Covid surge

at 10:23 am
US Defence Secretary

New Delhi (NVI): US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin today said that he has directed the US Department of Defence to provide material support to Indian healthcare workers as the country battles a second of Covid-19 pandemic.

“I’m deeply concerned about the COVID-19 outbreak in India, and today, I directed the @DeptofDefense to use every resources at our disposal, within our authority, to support U.S. interagency efforts to provide India’s frontline healthcare workers with the materials they need,” Austin said in a tweet.

“We are currently assessing the equipment we can procure and draw from our own inventory in the coming days and weeks,” he said in a statement.

Pertinent to mention here that US has said it will immediately deploy supplies and other assistance to India, according to White House, following a telephonic conversation between the National Security Advisers of two countries- NSA Ajit Doval and US NSA Jake Sullivan.

Meanwhile, Austin’s statement comes after US President Joe Biden assured help to India amid the pandemic.

“Just as India sent assistance to the United States as our hospitals were strained early in the pandemic, we are determined to help India in its time of need,” the US President said in a tweet.

Apart from Biden, US Vice President Kamala Harris has also said that the US administration is working closely with the Indian government to provide additional support.

“The U.S. is working closely with the Indian government to rapidly deploy additional support and supplies during an alarming COVID-19 outbreak. As we provide assistance, we pray for the people of India—including its courageous healthcare workers,” she said in a tweet.

Yesterday, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan spoke to the NSA Ajit Doval and expressed sympathy for the people of India following the recent spike in COVID-19 cases.

Sullivan said that the US has identified sources of specific raw material urgently required for Indian manufacture of the Covishield vaccine that will immediately be made available for India.