New Delhi: Soon after the Chinese Embassy urged the Indian authorities to review the coronavirus epidemic and adopt rational approach on supplying medical aids to China, the Ministry of External Affairs said some restrictions have been imposed on the export of certain medical equipment in view of the fact that these items are in short supply in India too. Also Read - Coronavirus Outbreak: China Urges India to Adopt Objective, Rational Approach

Issuing a press statement, the MEA stated that just like any other country, India with a billion-plus population has the responsibility to take the necessary measures to combat the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak which if not properly managed can become a global risk. Also Read - Coronavirus Outbreak: DGCA Asks Airports to Screen Passengers Coming From Nepal, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia

On reports that India has prohibited the export of some medical items which are much needed in China, MEA Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said that the precautions have been taken by India are in accordance with the WHO’s advisory about the outbreak of coronavirus infection which is a global public health emergency. Also Read - Amid Coronavirus Fears, Few Delhi Schools to Use Robot Pepe To Teach Kids About Handwashing

“However, responding to the needs of our Chinese friends, the Central government had allowed a one-time exemption for the export of some items which had been restricted for export,” he added.

In a humanitarian gesture of medical relief, the MEA said a gift reflecting the solidarity of the people of India with the people of China, is expected to be delivered to Wuhan by a special flight. “We have also called upon the Chinese authorities to allow Indian citizens and those of our neighbouring countries to return by the same flight. We hope that they will give it positive consideration,” he added.

The statement from the MEA comes after the Chinese Embassy in India said, “It’s hoped that Indian side could review the epidemic situation in an objective, rational and calm manner, handle with China’s much-needed items in a cooperative and constructive way, and resume the normal personnel exchanges and trade between us as soon as possible.”

The development comes as the Central government on February 21 took the decision to curb the export of medicines to China in the wake of the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus.

However, on February 10, India had cleared some consignments of medical gear placed by China to combat the coronavirus.