New Delhi: As the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in India reached around 500, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday lambasted the Narendra Modi government and accused it of delaying its decision to ban the export of life-saving equipment like ventilators. Also Read - China Reveals Over 1,300 Asymptomatic Cases of Coronavirus

The government had on March 19 banned export of all ventilators, surgical/disposable masks and textile raw material used for making masks with immediate effect in wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Also Read - UEFA Postpones All International Matches Scheduled For June Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

“Respected Prime Minister, why did the Indian government allow the export of all these things till March 19 contrary to WHO’s advice to keep sufficient stock of ventilators and surgical masks. Which forces encouraged these games? Isn’t this a criminal conspiracy,” Gandhi asked in a tweet in Hindi. Also Read - Australia: Coronavirus Cases Rise to 4,800, Death Toll Touches 21

The Congress MP also tagged a news report which claimed that India did not stockpile coronavirus protective equipment for health workers despite WHO guidelines in this regard.