As the world’s top scientists intensify their research for a vaccine to contain the coronavirus, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has invoked the ancient Indian epic Ramayana and sought closer cooperation with India as he alluded to Lord Hanuman’s voyage to the Himalayas to find the magic medicine, “Sanjeevani Booti.” “Just as Lord Hanuman brought the holy medicine from the Himalayas to save the life of Lord Rama’s brother Lakshmana, and Jesus healed those who were sick and restored the sight to Bartimeu, India, and Brazil will overcome this global crisis by joining forces and sharing blessings for the sake of all people,” the Brazilian leader wrote in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Brazilian leader’s reference to Ramayana signify immense popularity of Indian culture and spirituality in Brazil and the Latin America region, said Manish Chand, Editor-in-Chief, India and World magazine and India Writes Network.“In Brazilian cities like Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, yoga has a huge following among all sections of society,” he said.The Brazilian leader has also requested for the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) from India to bolster his country’s medicinal reserves against coronavirus. In the absence of a COVID-19 vaccine, the drug has been considered in some quarters as therapeutic against the disease. President Donald Trump, who had also requested for hydroxychloroquine supplies from India, dubbed it as a game-changer in the fight against coronavirus.Mr Bolsonaro’s references to “Sanjeevani Booti” in the letter may have implied to his request for hydroxychloroquine during a phone call to Modi last week. After their talks, he had tweeted: “Requested support in the continuity of the provision of pharmaceuticals for the production of hydroxychloroquine.” Modi had assured all support to the Brazilian leader.The Brazilian President was the chief guest at the 70th Republic Day celebrations of India.According to a news report, India has received requests for the drug from at least 30 countries.
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