The Congress on Wednesday asked the Narendra Modi-led government how it planned to control the coronavirus pandemic on the day India’s infection tally breached the 50-lakh mark with 90,123 cases.
Party chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala also asked if the government would “blame God” to evade accountability, in an apparent dig at Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s “act of God” remark. The finance minister had on August 27 referred to the coronavirus crisis as an “act of God” that led to the contraction of India’s economy and led to the shortfall in Goods and Services Tax collection.
In a series of tweets, Surjewala posed various questions to the Centre and said “Mahabharata of the coronavirus pandemic” was on, but the Narendra Modi-led government was missing.
“Facts about Covid-19, will the PM [Prime Minister] answer-: 1. In coronavirus infections per day – India at number 1 in the world [90,123 infections],” he wrote on Twitter. “2. Coronavirus mortality rate per day – India ranks first in the world [1,290 deaths] 3. Coronavirus infection rate doubling – India at number 1 in the world [double in 31 days] 4. In total coronavirus cases – India ranks second in the world.”
He also said that India was on the second rank in the number of active cases with 9,95,933 infections and, in terms of fatalities due to the virus, the country stood at the third spot globally with 82,066 deaths.
The Congress has been relentlessly attacking the Centre over its handling of the coronavirus crisis.
On Tuesday, party leader Rahul Gandhi criticised the government, a day after the government admitted in Parliament that it had no data on the number of migrants workers who died during the nationwide lockdown imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
On Monday, he had attacked Modi over the outbreak and the subsequent lockdown. “The unplanned lockdown is the product of one person’s ego, which has caused the coronavirus to spread across the country,” Gandhi said.
On September 9, the Congress leader took a dig at the prime minister, saying that he promised to end the coronavirus crisis in 21 days but instead finished off small businesses and the livelihoods of crores of people.
Senior party leader P Chidambaram had also criticised the Modi-led government on September 5 for its strategies that failed to curb the spread of infection and claimed that India was the only country that did not benefit from a lockdown.
On September 1, he had rebuked Sitharaman for her “act of God” remarks, saying that she should not blame God for a “man-made disaster”. The Congress leader also questioned Chief Economic Adviser KV Subramanian’s claim that the economy would register a tentative recovery in the next quarter on the back of a “V-shaped recovery”.
The total number of coronavirus cases reached 50,20,359 in just 11 days after it crossed the 40 lakh-mark, according to the Union Health Ministry data. On Wednesday, the toll rose by 1,290 to 82,066. As many as 39,42,360 people have recovered from the infection, taking the recovery rate to 78.53% The mortality rate, meanwhile, is 1.63%.