New Delhi, May 1: With India battling a COVID-19 surge, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Saturday urged the Centre to evolve a political consensus on a national policy to tackle the spread of the pandemic.
In a video message, she said it is time for the central and state governments to wake up and fulfil their duties.
Gandhi also said COVID-19 jabs should be provided free of cost to all citizens and sought compulsory licensing to ramp up vaccine production to speed up the country's inoculation drive.
"I urge the central government to evolve a national policy to deal with the COVID crisis in the country and bring about a political consensus over it," the Congress president said.
"This is the time for central and state governments to wake up and fulfil their duties," she said.
Gandhi urged the Centre to deposit Rs 6,000 in the account of every poor family to help them tide over the current crisis.
She also called for increasing testing and checking the black marketing of essential life-saving drugs.
Gandhi said the Congress party will stand with the Centre in the fight against the pandemic and appealed to all Indians to unite in these testing times.
India's daily COVID-19 cases reached a record high of 4,01,993 on Saturday, taking the cumulative caseload to 1,91,64,969. The death toll climbed to 2,11,853 with 3,523 fresh fatalities, according to Union health ministry data.