Derek O’Brien Slams BJP Govt Over Handling of Covid-19 Pandemic
Alluding to Home Minister Amit Shah’s ‘chronology’ comment, O’Brien in a scathing remark said the Central government had inadequately handled the Covid-19 situation by not discussing the lockdown with Chief Ministers prior to the nationwide announcement.
- Last Updated: September 16, 2020, 4:50 PM IST
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Trinamool Congress leader Derek O’Brien on Wednesday attacked the Narendra Modi government over the PM-CARES Fund set up for the coronavirus pandemic in the country, saying it was the “most opaque fund” in the world and termed it as “PM couldn’t-care-less fund”.
O’Brien told the Rajya Sabha on the third day of Monsoon Session, “You must not use pandemic to convert democracy into an autocracy.”
Alluding to Home Minister Amit Shah’s “chronology” comment, O’Brien in a scathing remark said the central government had inadequately handled the Covid-19 situation by not discussing the lockdown with chief ministers prior to the nationwide announcement.
“On January 30, the first Covid-19 case was detected in India. On February 24, PM Modi hosted US President Donald Trump and during all this, many Chief Ministers were working for Covid. On March 25, a 21-day lockdown was announced with a four hours notice. My question to the government is this, was at least one video conference held before March 26 for coronavirus? On public health, states have spent Rs 63 out of every Rs 100 spent. When things are going well, you want to take credit. When they are not, you start talking about CMs,” he was quoted as saying.
Urging the Centre to show “humility” and work with the Chief Ministers, he said, “The Centre should have taken best practices from different states, like covering all allied workers under insurance and make a formidable plan for the pandemic. No one knows it all, not us, neither do you. This government needs the humility to work with states,”