Keep political differences aside, work as a team to defeat COVID-19: Naidu

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New Delhi, Apr 14 (PTI) Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday urged everyone to put aside political differences and work as a team to defeat the coronavirus pandemic.

During a virtual interaction with governors on COVID-19 situation and the vaccination drive, he said there was a need to implement the proven and reliable strategy of 'test track and treat' with renewed vigour to counter the spread of coronavirus.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan also attended the interaction.

One of the most useful lessons we have learnt during the last year is that we have succeeded in our fight against COVID-19 mainly because of collaborative work, Naidu said.

He noted that the central government has decided the COVID-19 strategy in close collaboration with the state governments and 'called upon everyone to keep political differences aside and act unitedly as a team', a statement issued by the Vice President Secretariat said.

Expressing concern over the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the country, Naidu cautioned that the healthcare infrastructure will inevitably come under tremendous pressure.

'He called for special focus on 10 states that account for 85 per cent of national cases and 89 per cent deaths reported in the last 14 days,' the statement said.

Recognising that the challenge is formidable, the vice president said the country is better prepared today as compared to last year because the nation has ramped up infrastructure over the course of the past one year.

Noting that every governor, as the constitutional head of state, has an important role in the fight against the pandemic, Naidu wanted them to collaborate actively with their respective chief ministers and act as consensus builders.

'You can not only share your experience and expertise but also provide guidance to the state governments on crafting a more effective strategy,' he told the governors. PTI NAB BJ BJ