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Brazil invokes Ramayana, requests Hydroxychloroquine from India

"Just as Lord Hanuman brought the holy medicine from the Himalayas to save the life of Lord Rama's brother Laksmana....."

Brazil invokes Ramayana, requests Hydroxychloroquine from India
Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro is accompanied by India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi (back) as he attends a ceremonial reception at Rashtrapati Bhavan - The Presidential Palace in New Delhi on January 25, 2020. (Photo by Jewel SAMAD / AFP)

New Delhi: After a ‘Mahabharat‘ over Hydroxychloroquine between US and India, now Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro has invoked Ramayana to request New Delhi the export of the anti-malaria drug which may be effective in treating COVID-19

High demanded drug

Since the last few weeks, Hydroxychloroquine has become one of the most highly demanded drugs worldwide. India, the world’s main supplier of generic drugs, has found itself under pressure from other countries to export this drug though the state itself witnessing increase in virus cases.

Letter from Brazil

After US, now Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro wrote to Prime Minister Modi saying, “Just as Lord Hanuman brought the holy medicine from the Himalayas to save the life of Lord Rama’s brother Laksmana, and Jesus healed those who were sick and restored the sight to Bartimeu, India and Brazil will overcome this global crisis by joining forces and sharing blessings for the sake of all peoples. Please accept, your Excellency, the assurances of my highest esteem and consideration.”

Trump’s U-Turns

US President Donald Trump warned of a retaliation if India didn’t export the drug. India immediately allowed limited exports and called for export of key drugs essential for combating Covid-19. 

On Tuesday Trump made a U-turn and backed New Delhi’s position on the export of the great. From “retaliation” threat a day earlier, Trump went on to call Modi “great”. “I bought millions of doses. More than 29 million. I spoke to PM Modi, a lot of it comes out of India. I asked him if he would release it? He was Great. He was really good. You know they put a stop because they wanted it for India. But there is a lot of good things coming from that,” Trump said to Fox news.

Stocks depleting

The Indian government had put a hold on exports of hydroxychloroquine and paracetamol as stocks are reducing due to global supply chains.

“It has been decided that India would licence paracetamol and HCQ in appropriate quantities to all our neighbouring countries who are dependent on our capabilities,” the Ministry of External Affairs announced on Tuesday.

Indian foreign ministry spokesman Anurag Srivastava said: “We will also be supplying these essential drugs to some nations who have been particularly badly affected by the pandemic”


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