Geneva: India, which led the world in eradicating two silent killers -- smallpox and polio -- in the past, has a tremendous capacity in eradicating the deadly coronavirus pandemic that has now claimed nearly 15,000 lives globally, says the executive director of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Michael Ryan.
During a press conference in Geneva on Monday on the COVID-19 pandemic, Ryan said “the world's second-most populous country, India led the world in eradicating two silent killers -- the small-pox and polio -- and eliminating them from the country through targeted public intervention.”
"There are no easy answers. It is exceptionally important that countries like India show the way to the world as they have done before," he said.
India has reported over 500 cases of coronavirus and nine deaths, according to Health Ministry data on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Monday warned that the coronavirus pandemic was clearly "accelerating" but said it was still possible to "change the trajectory" of the outbreak. "The pandemic is accelerating," Tedros told journalists in a virtual news briefing.
He said it took 67 days from the beginning of the outbreak in China in late December for the virus to infect the first 100,000 people worldwide. In comparison, it took 11 days for the second 100,000 cases and just four days for the third 100,000 cases, he said.
"These numbers matter, these are people, whose lives & families have been turned upside down," Tedros tweeted later.
"We are not helpless bystanders. We can change the trajectory of this pandemic," Tedros said.
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