New Delhi: At a time when France has just delivered five state-of-the-art Rafale fighter aircraft to India, French President Emmanuel Macron has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi “expressing France’s solidarity with India at this difficult time”, government sources confirmed on Tuesday.
Sources said France has also sent medical equipment to India to help it battle the coronavirus pandemic, including 50 Osiris 3 ventilators, 70 Yuwell 830 ventilators with BIPAP mode, 50,000 serological tests (IgM/IgG Duo test kits by Biosensor) and 50,000 nose and throat swabs.
India has seen a surge in coronavirus cases and a recent military tensions on the borders with China, which led to the deaths of 20 Indian soldiers last month.
Government sources termed the supply of French medical equipment at the same time as delivery of the Rafale fighters as a “happy coincidence”, emphasising that "France is an important strategic partner for India”.
"France has now provided medical equipment and expertise to India for our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and it is a happy coincidence that this equipment has arrived at the same time as the Rafale jets are supposed to land. The ventilators and test kits are being received by the Indian Red Cross Society and ICMR, respectively," government sources said.
India also said that in the recent past, it has at short notice also provided certain life-saving drugs to France in their time of need to help them deal with the pandemic.
France has been one of the western European countries worst-hit by the coronavirus pandemic....