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DC Edit | India is Turkey's good dost'


Published on: February 10, 2023 | Updated on: February 10, 2023

Turkey suffered an earthquake of 7.7 magnitude on the Richter scale. (Photo: AFP)

A dost in need is a dost indeed. India rose to the occasion in a way that is both humane, and brilliant, to reach out with substantial aid and support during one of Turkey’s darkest hours in decades, after an earthquake of 7.7 magnitude on the Richter scale ripped apart the country on February 6, besides parts of Syria, creating one of the largest global humanitarian crises in a long time.

As part of Operation Dost, India has sent planes, so far seven, to set up temporary hospitals, and rushed sniffer dogs and rescue personnel besides most of the immediate emergency requirements, including medicines, clothes and food. Indian rescue workers have already set up a temporary field hospital to provide first aid and urgent medical care and need, even as Indian emergency rescue workers and dogs are trying to rescue people trapped in the debris of the quake and save lives.

Firat Sunel, the ambassador of Turkey to India, wrote on Twitter that Operation Dost was a "very important operation" which demonstrated friendship between the two nations.

It is a significant diplomatic moment for India that, alongside such sentiment being expressed in favour of India, Turkey also snubbed and reportedly told Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to cancel his visit to Ankara because the government was busy with relief and rescue missions. Equally worthwhile to note, the Indian government began to rush support and aid for Turkey within hours of the earthquake and was among the first nations in the world to come to the support of the tragedy-stuck country.

While it is in keeping with India’s cultural legacy to support any country suffering from a natural disaster, such initiative has so much diplomatic promise because Turkey has in recent times often stood out for its vocal support to Pakistan on issues like Kashmir and ignored India’s case to the world to stand united in condemning Pakistan’s support of terrorism as a state policy and respecting Kashmir as an internal matter of India.

Differences aside, it was a victory of the Modi government to support Turkey in the hour of need, and the people of India should be proud of being a good dost.