Geneva (Switzerland) | Jagran News Desk: With the world battling hard to contain the spread of the novel COVID-19 virus, India has decided to join 61 nations calling for an independent inquiry into the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) response to the coronavirus pandemic, according to a draft resolution proposed for 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA) meeting beginning on Sunday.

According to the draft propose at the WHA, the 62 nations, including India, have called for “impartial, independent and comprehensive” probe into the coronavirus crisis. The 62 nations have also called for an inquiry into the actions of the WHO and “their timelines pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic”.

“Initiate, at the earliest appropriate moment, and in consultation with the Member States a stepwise process of impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation, including using existing Mechanisms, as appropriate, to review experience gained and lessons learned from the WHO-coordinated international health response to COVID-19,” the draft reads, as reported by news agency ANI.

According to a News18 report, the 62 nations have also called the organisation to “identify the zoonotic source of the virus and the route of introduction to human population, including possible role of intermediate hosts” and to enable this through “collaborative field missions.”

However, the motion has not found the mention of China or the city of Wuhan where the outbreak is believed to have started.

European nations and Australia have been gathering support for an “impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation” of “the WHO-coordinated international health response to COVID-19”.

Last month, Australia was the first country to call for an independent inquiry into how the coronavirus started. Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said allowing the WHO to investigate the outbreak “strikes me as a bit poacher and gamekeeper,” ABC reported.

“This is about collaborating to equip the international community to better prevent or counter the next pandemic and keep our citizens safe,” Payne was quoted as saying by ABC.

Other major countries named in the EU-backed draft include Japan, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, South Korea, Brazil, and Canada.

(With ANI inputs)

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma