A social media post on Weibo, one of the biggest social media platforms in China, mocking the COVID-19 crisis in India received heavy backlash from netizens across the world. The social media post was later removed from the website.
The social media post showcased two photographs side by side. One glorifying China’s rocket launch and the other showing Covid-19 victims being cremated in India. The post ridiculing India’s state was posted by an account linked with the Chinese Communist Party.
As per the reports by BBC, the post was put on the Commission for Political and Legal Affairs of the CPC’s central committee’s Weibo account on Saturday afternoon. The caption of the post read as “When China sets things on fire vs. when India does it”. The post was called out for its insensitivity by various netizens. It also had a hashtag noting that new Covid-19 cases in India had surpassed 400,000 a day.
The commission for political and legal affairs is one of the powerful wings of the CPC. It is currently headed by Guo Shengkun.
The Chinese foreign ministry reported that the post was not available on the social media platform. Weibo. The relevant Weibo account was also missing as per media reports. The ministry also clarified that it is completely supporting India in its fight against COVID-19 and has taken the necessary steps to help India.
“China is doing its utmost to support India in fighting the new round of the epidemic. In the next few days, more anti-epidemic resources will continue to be sent to India to support India’s anti-epidemic efforts. Many donations and purchases in this area are carried out through unofficial channels,” the ministry pointed out.
As per media reports, there was another set of juxtaposing images about India’s failure to contain the coronavirus pandemic. These images came from the Public Order Administration in China’s Ministry of Public Security and showed the contradictory condition of China and India. On the right, there was an image of the Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, a temporary hospital that accommodated the COVID-19 patients. Whereas, on the left, there was an image of a crematorium in India with the hashtag “India turned a crematorium for dogs into one for humans.”
“Hold high the banner of humanitarianism at this time, show sympathy for India, and firmly place Chinese society on a moral high ground,” wrote Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief of China’s Global Times.
“I don’t think we can expect a clarification from the Party account in question, but I do think there was no consensus on this post or else it would not have been removed so quickly,” said Manya Koetse, the editor-in-chief of What’s On Weibo, a site that tracks trends on the social media platform.
Diplomatic relation between the countries
The diplomatic relation between the countries has been low due to military tensions that began last year. This came as a result of the disengagement between the Chinese army armed forces from the southern and northern banks of Pangong Lake in the Ladakh. Tensions between both countries remain.
Chinese President Xi Jinping however, sent a message to Prime Minister Narendra Modi offering condolences on the massive second wave of the pandemic. The Chinese president also offered to help and strengthen anti-pandemic cooperation.
“Only through solidarity and cooperation can all countries across the world defeat the pandemic finally,” he said.