In a surprise move, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau has not wished to ask Indian help over vaccine shortage, something that is not going well with his counterpart governors in the various Canadian provinces.
The news has become apparent as Michelle Rempel Garner, a Conservative MP and Shadow Minister for Health was forced into inquiring with the standing committee on health if the Trudeau government had actually reached out to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for vaccines.
In response, the Procurement Minister for Vaccines couldn’t give an affirmative response and did say that the Trudeau government was doing everything possible to procure more shots from other countries. But India does not feature on the list of those possible buyers list.
Ironically, India has been sending out vaccine doses in large numbers to other countries under the “Vaccine Maitri” initiative. Till now, as many as 15 countries have received COVID-19 vaccine supplies from India, while another 25 countries are queued at different levels to receive supplies, Union Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar has said.
At play could be Canada’s support of the farmers’ bill and distaste over India’s stand over the ramification of the bill. Canada is home to a huge population of Indian Sikhs that prove to be a huge vote bank for Trudeau. They have known to have invested lots into his previous campaigns and funded construction work in Canada.
On his part, Trudeau is trying to calm down a panicked lot. The doses due from Moderna and Pfizer are now running late both companies are obligated to meet the demand at the home front. Canada has been run down by China and is looking banking on the Covax scheme to get its procurement. The easiest way would have been to seek help from India. But the intervention into Indian internal matters has made things sour between the nations.