After having mismanaged the coronavirus outbreak in Delhi, Aam Aadmi Party today tried to deflect the criticism by blaming the central government for its vaccine diplomacy initiative.
In a tweet, the official Twitter account of the Aam Aadmi Party mentioned a list of countries to allege that PM Modi sought votes from Indians but sent the vaccines abroad. Apparently, the list of the countries shared by AAP were Muslim-majority nations, with the first in the list being Pakistan.
AAP’s sly attempt to insinuate that PM Modi had helped only Islamic nations while seeking votes from Indians was not lost on Twitter users, who promptly called out the Arvind Kejriwal government for posting a misleading tweet and being economical with truth.
India supplied vaccines to 95 countries, Pakistan was allocated vaccines by GAVI
Many social media users highlighted that India had provided vaccines to not just Islamic nations but a total of 95 countries, including all of the UN peacekeeping forces, as a part of its commitment to the global community.
However, Pakistan has received AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccines through COVAX, a worldwide initiative aimed at equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines directed by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and the World Health Organization.
As part of its obligation to Gavi, the Serum Institute of India is contract bound to provide its manufactured vaccines to the COVAX, as they were first risk investors. India cannot dictate what Gavi does with the vaccines or whom it donates. As such, India is also one of the beneficiaries of Gavi. It is, therefore, profoundly wrong on the AAP’s part to accuse the Indian government of donating vaccines to Pakistan.
However, yet AAP’s tweet mentions Pakistan as the first country in the list of beneficiaries that received vaccines delivered by India. Clearly, AAP had tried to whip up anti-government sentiments among people by highlighting that India had even provided vaccines to its arch-nemesis, Pakistan. Though, it was lousy enough to not check if Pakistan was indeed a beneficiary of India’s vaccine diplomacy.
After being called out, AAP posts the remaining the list of beneficiaries
After social media users called out the Aam Aadmi Party for its propaganda against PM Modi, the Arvind Kejriwal-led Party tried to salvage itself by sharing the remaining list of countries that received vaccines made in India. Two hours after its initial tweet that included only Muslim-majority countries as the recipients of India’s vaccine diplomacy, the official Twitter account of the Aam Aadmi Party posted a string tweets that included countries that were earlier left out by it.
🇸🇷Suriname— AAP (@AamAadmiParty) May 17, 2021
🇦🇬Antigua & Barbuda
🇨🇩Democratic Republic of the Congo
🇸🇹São Tomé and Príncipe
🇨🇲Cameroon— AAP (@AamAadmiParty) May 17, 2021
मोदी जी, हमारी Vaccine इन देशों में क्यों भेजी?
AAP political sly in highlighting only the Muslim nations was called out by many on Twitter.
The original tweet listing only muslim countries was at 11.55.— Col Abhishek Raj Bajpai, SM (Veteran) (@abhishekshubhra) May 17, 2021
When called out for promoting Islamophobia @AamAadmiParty tweeted this including other countries at 1.53. Full two hours later. https://t.co/td6tAAAnu6
Delhi’s AAP government messes up handling resurgent coronavirus outbreak in the national capital
Delhi was in the throes of a raging coronavirus outbreak last month as the cases increased dramatically and the hospitals in the national capital struggled with the oxygen supplies. Not just oxygen, but there was also shortages of beds, key antiviral drugs to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Patients in Delhi have been left to fend for themselves as they contend with the scarcity of oxygen, beds and medicines. In the absence of a responsible government in the state, their relatives often had to resort to Twitter and other social media websites for raising SOS alarm and seeking help.
Even the hospitals in Delhi have accused the Aam Aadmi Party government of mismanaging the coronavirus outbreak and not providing a steady supply of oxygen to them, which resulted in deaths of patients who could have otherwise be saved if the Delhi government had competently handled the crisis.
It is notable here that the entire narrative of India “sending doses abroad” is misplaced as the doses of vaccines sent to friendly nations under ‘Vaccine Maitri’ is a small percentage of what India has already provided to its own citizens. Also the ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative has built an enormous amount of international goodwill for India, reflective in the support and help India is getting from several nations to battle the second wave of Covid crisis.