New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday directed Indian envoys posted in missions abroad to “publicise” the PM-CARES Fund and direct donations towards the government’s efforts to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
Modi had announced the creation of the PM’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM-CARES) fund on Saturday for people to donate to in times of national emergencies like the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.
“He called on Heads of Indian Missions to help boost the morale of such compatriots abroad, and to help them address issues arising from their unplanned stay abroad, with their host governments, and also to address other problems Indians might face abroad, including arranging shelter where necessary and feasible,” said a press statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs.
PM Modi, who held a videoconference with heads of Indian missions, also asked the envoys “to mobilise donations from abroad”, noting that extraordinary times required extraordinary solutions.
The statement said the PM lauded the efforts of Indian ambassadors and high commissioners during such a challenging time, and said India had to take some stringent actions in order to “reduce the risk of importing the infection, and thereafter to prevent a large outbreak”.
“Prime Minister noted that extraordinary times require extraordinary solutions, which was why even in this globalized era, most of the world had quarantined itself. This was an unavoidable step taken to fight this pandemic, but it was also hugely consequential, as the closure of the globalized system has had an extensive and far-reaching impact upon the international transport system, financial markets and the global economy,” the release said, quoting Modi.
During the video conference, Modi also complimented the envoys for pulling off a massive evacuation exercise of Indians stranded abroad.
Modi also directed them to follow a five-point agenda that mainly looked at attending to Indians who remain in various foreign countries, given the uncertainty over international travel restrictions.
“Since this crisis also impacts the economy, PM advised Heads of Mission to also focus on ensuring that commerce in essential supplies, logistics chains, remittances and so on are unaffected, through their coordination with foreign partners,” the statement said.
The video-conference was attended by 10 heads of missions in China, US, Iran, Italy, Germany, UAE and South Korea, among others. Envoys from the neighbouring countries also participated.