Tuesday, 9 August, 2022
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RSS affiliate appeals to Modi govt to not import Covid-19 testing kits, masks from China

Swadeshi Jagran Manch national co-convener Ashwini Mahajan says this is the time to ramp up indigenous capacity and trust local companies.

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New Delhi: RSS-affiliate Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM) has urged the Narendra Modi government not to import from China any personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks, eye gear, and testing kits and ventilators to fight the Covid-19 outbreak.

Speaking to ThePrint, SJM national co-convener Ashwini Mahajan said China’s equipment and ventilators are not trustworthy, and that India should not rely on Chinese products in this critical time.

The SJM also wrote to the B.S. Yediyurappa government in Karnataka last week, urging it not to import “faulty” Chinese Covid-19 testing kits.

The Karnataka government is reportedly in talks with a Chinese manufacturer to procure rapid testing kits.

“We have advised Yediyurappa ji not to import testing kits. We have also requested (Railways and Commerce Minister) Piyush Goyal and the Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) to stop importing personal protective equipment from China and to save India from more infection. If Spain, Netherlands, Czech Republic are returning faulty test kits (imported from China) then why are we ready to import? The government should wake up,” Mahajan said.

India has, however, already received the first batch of medical supplies from China’s Alibaba Foundation.

This apart, government-owned HLL Lifecare has floated a global tender seeking personal protective equipment for healthcare personnel, and it expects suppliers in China, South Korea and Singapore to participate.

China, which was the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, has also offered to provide medical gear to India.

Also read: Like Donald Trump, RSS affiliate too wants COVID-19 to be renamed ‘China virus’

Several countries reject Chinese equipment

Concerns have been raised over the quality of Chinese medical equipment after several countries decided to return masks and testing kits imported from China

Spain announced last week that it would return more than 600,000,000 rapid testing kits it had purchased from a Chinese company after testing of an imported batch showed they only had a 30 per cent detection rate. 

Turkey also reportedly raised similar concerns about the quality of Chinese testing kits.

The Netherlands authorities, meanwhile, have ordered hospitals to send back around 600,000 masks that had been imported from China after they failed to meet the quality standards.

Even 80 per cent of the testing kits sent to Czech Republic by China proved to be faulty.

‘Not Amazon, local shops are helping Indians now’ 

Production of N-95 masks and other protective equipment has taken a massive hit as vital components used to make these equipment are imported from China and South Korea, and their supplies have been disrupted due to the pandemic.

“We are finding difficulties in importing several components used in making ventilators. They were largely imported from China, South Korea. Now, we have ordered (the components) from our indigenous companies, but it will take at least one month to get the massive orders,” said a manufacturer of ventilators.

To cope with the shortage of these equipment, the government had on 19 March banned the export of surgical and disposable masks, all ventilators and textile raw materials used for making masks with immediate effect.

Mahajan, meanwhile, told ThePrint India has the capacity to make adequate masks and other medical equipment on its own.

“A Mysuru-based company can alone produce one lakh ventilators. This is the time to ramp up indigenous capacity and trust our local companies,” he added.

In this time of crisis, Mahajan said, local stores are helping people and not Amazon or Flipkart.

“What happened to Amazon, Flipkart? They have closed their delivery. Only local kirana shops are rescuing Indians. So, trust our manufacturers, don’t rely on the Chinese,” he added.

Also read: RSS mouthpiece turns to Swami Vivekananda’s Calcutta ‘Plague Manifesto’ to fight COVID-19


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  1. One can understand about testing equipment, but what could be wrong with masks made in China or anywhere else. Our prisoners are making masks in jails, it has also become a home industry – – are they using clothes of certain specification? Chinese testing equipment may not have high degree of detection rate because the world has been introduced to this little monster, the coronavirus only recently, and no one knows its tricky ways to escape detection. If not China, then does any other country know how take fully reliable testing equipment? Does the Mecca of research, the USA know? If it does, then why did it import the Chinese gear in the first place?
    China’s electronic manufacturing is second to none, provided someone else supplies the blueprints. Like mobile phones, computers etc. It was never known for pioneering research, which always came from western countries. If the RSS bigwigs are confident about coronavirus treatment, then let them show the world the way. “Tamso ma jyotir gamaya”. If not, then they should at least sit quietly like a decent, low IQ-ed man does.

    • Your foolishness seems boundless. Have you not read about the chinese ppe’s being faulty (both in cases of overalls as well as masks?) This is common knowledge among the people who are following the news. As for reliable testing kits, after getting 3rd rate stuff from china – Singapore, S Korea, USA all have managed to come up with more reliable testing kits. So what are you talking about? Actually as far as i know USA never imported test kits from china at all. In fact they did a critical error of supplying ppe to china in January beginning.
      Again, not in touch with reality – US infact has created a home industry for ppe’s that non first responders can use. For first responders, this frees up medical grade stocks. Please read what is happening in the world and then pass comments like this. I can understand that you are against RSS and your ruling BJP as a matter of principle – however unfounded it may be, however do not let that detract you from knowing the truth.

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