Karnataka far from its daily vaccination target: Data
The Karnataka government has reiterated its goal to inoculate at least 70% of its over 70 million population with two doses of Covid-19 vaccine and around 90% with the first by the year end.
However, data shows that Karnataka has seen sharp fluctuations in its vaccination drives, designed in a way that there are high on selective occasions and then a sharp dip almost as if doses are hoarded to make these events a success.
Mansukh Mandaviya, the union minister for health, family welfare, chemicals and fertilizers on Sunday said that Karnataka was the highest among all other states in the country in its vaccination targets on September 17, the birthday of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“In the special drive undertaken on September 17, around 2.5 crore doses were administered. Karnataka had given the highest doses of vaccines and created a record,,” according to a statement by the chief minister’s office (CMO), attributing the comment to Mandaviya.
But data shows that since September 17, Karnataka’s vaccine coverage has seen a sharp dip barring just three days when it administered around one million doses.
Karnataka has also seen a sharp fluctuation in its vaccine drives since September 17 when it administered a record 3.17 million doses in a single day as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday.
Since then, the state has administered around one million doses just three times and sometimes as low as below 30,000.
Data from Cowin portal shows that the state administered 3,177,382 doses on September 17. However, just a day later, it went down to 247,464 and down to 70,298 the following day, data shows.
On October 3, the state administered just 29,390 doses, data from Cowin shows.
Karnataka chief minister Basavaraj Bommai has maintained that the government would aim to inoculate five lakh doses per day since the beginning of September and that there was enough stock to do the same.
“When we asked him (union health minister) for 1 crore doses, he said take 1.5 crore doses and administer five lakh per day. He gave us more supplies and even fixed a higher target for us,” Bommai said at an event on Sunday.
But data shows that Karnataka has administered higher than five lakh doses only on four days in the last one month (since September 10).
On September 17, the state administered 3,177,382 doses, 10,68,839 on September 221,098,478 on September 29 and 976,040 on October 8, according to data from Cowin portal.
But the challenges are many in the state which is expecting the impact of the impending third wave of Covid-19 infections by the year end.
The government has also made several concessions to celebrate festivals, opening of schools and other activities to bring back some normalcy in the state even as fears of a third wave looms large.
Most of the high vaccination coverages are in large urban centres while people are sent back home without their shots, especially in rural areas where distance and transport have added to existing problems like growing hesitancy in districts like Yadgir, Raichur and Chamarajanagar among other places.
To overcome hesitancy, the district administration of Chamarajanagar had also tried to implement a ‘no-vaccine, no-pension/ration’ order that came under heavy criticism and eventually pulled back.