Kejriwal doesn't speak for India: S Jaishankar on Singapore Covid variant remark
New Delhi, May 19: External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar tweeted a sharp response to Kejriwal's Singapore variant remark, calling his comments "irresponsible".
"Singapore and India have been solid partners in the fight against #COVID19... However, irresponsible comments from those who should know better can damage long-standing partnerships. So, let me clarify- Delhi CM does not speak for India," Jaishankar tweeted.
However, irresponsible comments from those who should know better can damage long-standing partnerships.— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) May 19, 2021
So, let me clarify- Delhi CM does not speak for India.
Earlier, the MEA spokesperson had said that the Singapore government strongly objected to Kejriwal's remark.
"Singapore Government called in our High Commissioner today to convey strong objection to Delhi CM's tweet on "Singapore variant". High Commssioner clarified that Delhi CM had no competence to pronounce on Covid variants or civil aviation policy," the spokesperson said.
Singapore on Tuesday dismissed media reports quoting Kejriwal that a "very dangerous" strain of the coronavirus was prevalent in the city state, saying there is "no truth whatsoever" in such assertions.
Taking to Twitter, Kejriwal said the new strain of coronavirus could invade India in the form of a third wave.
"The new form of coronavirus in Singapore is said to be very dangerous for children. It could reach Delhi in the form of a third wave. My appeal to the Central government: 1. Cancel all air services with Singapore with immediate effect 2. Work on vaccine alternatives for children on a priority basis," the Delhi chief minister said in a tweet in Hindi on Tuesday.
Responding to Kejriwal's tweet, Singapore's health ministry said: "There is no truth whatsoever in the assertions found within the reports". "There is no Singapore variant. The strain that is prevalent in many of the COVID-19 cases in recent weeks is the B.1.617.2 variant, which originated in India. Phylogenetic testing has shown this B.1.617.2 variant to be associated with several clusters in Singapore," it said in a statement.
While there is no known Singapore strain of the coronavirus or any known to have originated in the city-state, Kejriwal appeared to be referring to a media report on Monday. The report had mentioned the threat posed to Singapore's children by the variant first detected in India.