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India dials up medical diplomacy, sends 85 mn HCQ tablets to 108 countries

India has dialled up its medical diplomacy, sending loads of medicines to 100-plus countries over the last two weeks to help them fight the Covid-19 pandemic. A top government official told Hindustan Times that India is supplying nearly 85 million hydroxychloroquine tablets and close to 500 million paracetamol tablets to the 108 countries.

This is apart from the 1,000 tonnes of paracetamol granules that have been sent to make tablets.

'As we speak, a total of 4,000 plus consignments to 60 countries are being cleared for dispatch,' the government official cited above said. In all, the medicine supplies will cover 108 countries.

Many of the supplies have been made through special Indian Air Force flights, foreign evacuation charters and even diplomatic cargo.

It is a huge exercise, and complicated too given that most countries, including India, have shut flight operations.

As one example, officials speak about how Indian HCQ tablets to be delivered to the Dominican Republic, which is the current President of the UNSC, were placed as diplomatic cargo on a US evacuation flight to Atlanta, Georgia. This diplomatic cargo will then be flown from New York to the island in the Carribean region in a Dominican charter later on Thursday.

The HCQ tablets sent as gifts to Mauritius and Seychelles were loaded on special Indian Air Force planes on Wednesday for delivery. For reaching the medicines to Afghanistan, efforts are being made to send the medicine by a special charter.

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