After Trump threat, India OKs export of hydroxychloroquine

Updated: Apr 08, 2020, 08:00 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

On March 25, India banned export of hydroxychloroquine in the midst of views in some quarters that the drug could be used to fight COVID-19. India is the largest exporter of the drug

Rahul Gandhi and Donald Trump
Rahul Gandhi and Donald Trump

India has decided to partially lift the ban on export of paracetamol and anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine in sync with its global commitment to deal with the pandemic, officials said on Tuesday.

On March 25, India banned export of hydroxychloroquine in the midst of views in some quarters that the drug could be used to fight COVID-19. India is the largest exporter of the drug. India's decision came a week after a telephonic conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump, who sought supply of hydroxychloroquine to the US to treat coronavirus infected people.

Trump on Monday said he would be surprised if New Delhi did not relent to the request as it has good relations with the US and warned India of retaliation if it did not export the anti-malarial drug despite his personal request. Officials said India would export the drug on a case-by-case basis after meeting all the domestic requirements.

"We will also be supplying these essential drugs to some nations who have been particularly badly affected by the pandemic," Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Anurag Srivastava said. India is learnt to have received requests from at least 20 countries. "Like any responsible government, our first obligation is to ensure that there are adequate stocks of medicines for the requirement of our own people," he said.

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