Top UN official in India welcomes Modi's 21-day nationwide lockdown decision

United Nations, Mar 26 (PTI) A top UN official in India has welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's decision of a 21-day nationwide lockdown to contain the spread of the deadly novel coronavirus, saying collective efforts are required to overcome 'one of the greatest health threats of our lifetime.” Modi on Tuesday announced a nationwide lockdown for three weeks in an attempt to stem the spread of coronavirus in India.

UN Resident Coordinator in India Renata Dessallien “welcomed Prime Minister Modi's strategy for a nationwide 21-day lockdown to curtail the spread of the virus,” spokesman for the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Stephane Dujarric said Thursday at the virtual daily press briefing.

Dessallien said the UN system in India is fully mobilized and ready to further step up in support of the government of India to fight COVID-19.

She said that she believed that “if we work together, we can overcome one of the greatest health threats of our lifetime.” Dujarric said UN agencies are working with the Indian government on preparedness and response measures, disease surveillance, lab and research protocols, risk communications, training on infection prevention and control and cluster containment plans, as well as surveillance and tracking of travellers.

“The UN in India remains active and is determined to deliver for the people they serve, especially the most vulnerable and disadvantaged who may be among the hardest hit,” Dujarric said in the briefing.

India on Thursday reported 694 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 16 deaths from the deadly disease.

According to the Johns Hopkins coronavirus tracker, the virus has globally infected over 500,000 people and claimed over 22,000 lives. PTI YAS RS RS