India -UAE: Partners in rendering humanitarian efforts
UAE -India and the United Arab Emirates have always shared a great relationship and have been partners in a plethora of arenas, even during adverse times. The strong bilateral relations that both countries share are intertwined and engraved into strong friendship is based on age old partnerships like religion, economy and culture. A big part of culture of both India and UAE is empathy and practice of humanity, and this forms another major bond between them as they seek to deliver humanitarian efforts to those in need and when in need.
One such recent example of brotherhood and humanitarian partnership between India and UAE was seen during Covid-19 pandemic. When India was struggling with catastrophic second wave of pandemic in 2021, solidarity came in pouring from all over the globe. At this time UAE wasted no time in sending in aid to India as part of its ongoing humanitarian efforts to countries all over. A special cargo with medical aid including 157 ventilators, 480 Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAPs) and other medical supplies was sent to India by the UAE in April 2021. Furthermore, when there was extreme shortage of medical oxygen for Covid-19 patients, in April, Indian Air Force (IAF) C-17 airlifted 18 cryogenic oxygen containers from Dubai Airport to Panagarh Air Base in three sorties.
As a sign of solidarity with India, Burj Khalifa – world’s tallest building located in Dubai – was lighted with tricolour on April 25, 2021.
Humanitarian acts and acts of solidarity continue to be practiced by UAE and India beyond the region. The latest crisis of Russia attacking Ukraine has impacted thousands of Ukrainians and many people of other nationalities in the most horrid ways.
India sent humanitarian aid package to Ukraine comprising of medicines, medical equipment and other relief aid through Poland in March beginning. Another consignment too was sent few days later. Ministry of External Affairs said that two tonnes of humanitarian aid including medicines, blankets, tents, tarpaulin, protective eye gear, water storage tanks, sleeping mats and surgical gloves have been sent to Ukraine.
On March 7, UAE sent aircraft carrying 30 tonnes of emergency health aid and medical supplies to Ukraine as part of relief efforts to assist the people of war struck country. Salem A Al Kaabi, the UAE’s Ambassador to Ukraine, said, “Sending an aircraft with medical supplies and relief aid is part of the UAE’s steadfast commitment to essential humanitarian needs in conflicts involving civilians, especially women and children, and to provide whatever assistance we can in what is a deteriorating humanitarian situation.”
Following historic free trade agreement between UAE and India, CEPA (Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement), Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi reiterated the strong relations with UAE. During a virtual summit with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, PM Modi said that the two countries would stand “shoulder to shoulder” against terrorism. Referring to recent terror attack in the Gulf country, Mr. Modi said, “We strongly condemn the recent terrorist attacks in the UAE. India and the UAE will stand shoulder to shoulder against terrorism.”
Complimenting UAE’s recent investment in Jammu and Kashmir, PM said, “Following the successful visit of the Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir to the UAE last month, several Emirati companies have shown interest in investing in Jammu and Kashmir.” He added, “We welcome investment by UAE in all sectors, including logistics, healthcare, hospitality, in Jammu and Kashmir.”