Interview: COVID-19 pandemic should not be politicized, says Indian expert

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NEW DELHI, July 25 (Xinhua) — “The coronavirus pandemic should not be politicized, much less should it be politicized for the purpose of winning an election” as U.S. politicians have been trying to do, an Indian expert has said.

“This is most unfortunate that this kind of politicization goes against the spirit of science,” said Sudheendra Kulkarni, former chairman of Mumbai-based think-tank Observer Research Foundation, in a recent interview with Xinhua.

Kulkarni said it is only objective scientific research that can bring out the truth, but politicization of a pandemic of this kind comes in the way of global cooperation that is absolutely necessary today.

“The very global scale and scope of the pandemic has made global cooperation and global collaboration necessary,” he said. “This is the time for the world to come together.”

Describing the U.S. withdrawal from the World Health Organization (WHO) as “most unfortunate and condemnable,” the expert said only international and collaborative research can bring out the truth, and all countries should cooperate with the WHO in this regard.

“All the information that comes out from anywhere in the world should be collected by the World Health Organization, and it should come to a scientific objective decision,” he added.

“My understanding is that China certainly has been transparent and sharing the information with the World Health Organization and with the international community,” he said.

He noted that it is a very good sign that the entire world is currently researching on an effective vaccine.

“My very strong belief is that countries should collaborate, share information, share their research so that the world gets a vaccine at the very earliest time,” he said.

He said as soon as COVID-19 broke out, China had been active not only in trying to contain the spread but in researching over an effective vaccine.

“China has done really commendably in containing the spread of the epidemic, even though it was the first victim of the epidemic,” he said.

Lauding Chinese efforts to send medical teams and providing personal protection equipment and other materials to many countries around the world, the expert said this shows a very strong sense of human solidarity on the part of the Chinese people and the Chinese government.

“I believe that every country should show the same spirit of solidarity to the extent that they are capable of,” he said. “The spirit of solidarity is something that is common all over the world and this is the time when humanity should show together solidarity in this hour of crisis.”

“America is a great nation, there are many great things about the United States, but there is something wrong about the politics of the United States, in which politicians resort to untruthful, harmful information and spread that information to their own population around the country, around the world,” Kulkarni said.

Kulkarni stressed that the COVID-19 pandemic does not respect any national border, nor does it respect any cultural, religious, racial borders or identities, so the fight against COVID-19 should have no boundaries.

“It is time to build a community with a shared future for mankind, similarly it is time to build common health for mankind to promote health as a common gift, and a common necessity for the whole of mankind,” he said. Enditem

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