By TNV Desk

EU Reporter, Brussels(Belgium) based European multimedia news platform has carried an expose’ revealing the nexus that has been driving international propaganda against India on the issue of handling of Corona crisis.

According to this report, “The Lancet’s latest report, India’s COVID-19 emergency, that discusses the Indian government’s Covid-19 management is yet another attempt by the Big Pharma lobby to undermine the abilities of a developing country to challenge their monopoly by rolling out vaccines at throwaway prices. Further, as a suggestion to improve the present situation of India, it does not suggest the developed countries to defuse the ongoing crisis through collaborations or assistance missions, something that was promptly provided by India even as it braved successive pandemic waves amidst its already stressed health sector. Instead, the author pushes for approval of more vaccines, especially the foreign vaccines as his first suggestion to improve the present situation.”

It further said, “Till now India has only included Russia’s Sputnik in it’s vaccination drive. The other foreign vaccines, like Pfizer or Moderna have not been granted approval as these vaccines require a special Cold chain infrastructure for maintaining ultra low temperatures (-70°c), and the companies have not yet submitted a concrete plan for the same. Owing to its huge demography, global pharma giants have a tendency to view India and the global South in general as a potential market for their vaccines.Over the years, India has emerged as a pharma exporting country in the generic drugs sector and substantially brought its production costs down, much to the chagrin of these monopoly seeker firms. Indian drugs have been hugely popular among the developing nations due to these factors.”

Exposing this nexus further, the report said, “In order to downplay Indian vaccines and subsequently fill the momentary vacuum in the market created thereof, repeated reports and articles in the international media have questioned the vaccination drive and the ability of India to mass produce vaccines to cater the world.This article appears to be an attempt on the similar lines where author has used statistics of convenience to push the agenda in the favour of foreign vaccines using reputed platforms, shrouding the big Pharma’s agendas in an academic language in its search for legitimizing its agendas.”

Questioning the credibility of Lancet, it said, ” The Lancet journal, as a platform has been used on multiple occasions for political propaganda. On July 23, 2014, The Lancet published An Open Letter for the People of Gaza, accusing Israel of “war crimes”. This concern per se is not under the question, but the cherrypicking of certain political issues, while turning a blind eye to various other heinous crimes or state-sponsored campaigns reeks of the politicization that has penetrated the journal, to an extent that it cannot be called as an unbiased research platform, given its proclivity to politicise such issues. Horton’s own tweets and articles have been largely acknowledged as polemical, considering his statements concerning more with politics rather than medical issues. An article in The New Yorker stated “in a manner that is unusual for the editor of a scientific journal, Horton has leaped into the politics of the pandemic”. Even the research publications have voiced similar issues on Horton’s conduct. The hyperlinked article, titled Trial By Error, Continued: My Questions for Lancet Editor Richard Horton published in the Virology Blog too raises a similar point. When questioned on the ethical and methodological aspects of the study, Horton refused to answer the author despite his repeated mails seeking clarification. “The Lancet’s decision to reject the Virology Blog letter will only compound the journal’s growing reputational damage over the issue”, the article stated.”

“The above mentioned proofs only constitute a tip of the iceberg of questions and accusations on Horton’, given his stature and directly affects the prestige of his prestigious position in The Lancet, a position he is in the helm for close to three decades now. Moving beyond these polemics, it must be realised despite India’s status as a developing nation and its limited resource base, the nation has come a very long way in preparing itself to battle against the pandemic. Despite these challenges, India stood committed to her global responsibility and exported almost 66 million vaccine doses. At a time when aid, empathy and partnerships happen to be India’s foremost concerns, globally reputed publications should desist from toying with politicized articles and commercial ideas, which are deeply demoralizing to any nation in such testing times,” said this report.