We need to push for global and national reforms in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic: Om Birla

Vienna: Lok Sabha Speaker Shri Om Birla participated in the General Debate on the topic ‘The global response to the COVID-19 pandemic challenges and multilateralism’s ability to deliver for the people’ at the Fifth World Conference of Speakers of Parliament (5WCSP) today.

Underlining India’s global response to the pandemic, Shri Birla said that India has been at the forefront of undertaking prompt humanitarian assistance and relief operations during the pandemic. He mentioned that we supplied vaccines, medicines and other equipments to over 150 countries as a measure of our commitment to global health and well being.

Shri Birla further stressed that the post-pandemic global economic recovery phase requires collaboration and cooperation between member countries, so as to stimulate the revival and rebounding of the global economy.

Shri Birla further said that the world needs to take important lessons from the pandemic. He cautioned that as more dreadful variants of virus are expected to arise, the global community needs to ensure that vaccines are distributed equitably around the world. Shri Birla also added that the international community needs to push for global and national reforms in order to make a more just and equal world in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Shri Birla further underlined that India was pro-active in dealing with COVID-19 and the hallmark of our response to the pandemic has people and communities at the core of our efforts. Shri Birla added that the initial measures taken by the country in the early days of the pandemic gave India the requisite time and resources to gear up its strategies to fight the virus.

Shri Birla also highlighted India’s focus on developing indigenous technologies. He underlined that we enhanced our production capacity of PPE kits, masks, face-covers, diagnostics, oxygen, drugs, ventilators and other accessories to fight the pandemic.

Mentioning that India reopened its economy in phases after the initial lockdown, Shri Birla informed the delegates that two major economic stimulus packages were announced immediately to provide much needed relief to people. He added that these packages included the $110 Billion Atmanirbhar Bharat Yojana which is equivalent to 10 percent of India’s GDP and the $23 Billion Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana relief package.

Shri Birla also mentioned that that India has embarked on world’s largest free-of-cost vaccination drive which has an ambitious target of inoculating 900 million citizens by the end of the year. Shri Birla further said that with the strength and will of its people, India is making steady progress towards this lofty goal.