After Centre announces free Covid vaccines to states, Delhi CM Kejriwal asks a question
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday questioned the Centre's move to provide coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine to everyone after June 21. Addressing a press conference, Kejriwal said how the central government will supply these vaccins free of cost to all the adults remains a big question.
The announcement about free vaccines was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the nation on Monday. The Union health ministry, which issued guidelines in this regard, said that the allocation of doses to states and union territories (UTs) will be based on their population, burden of the viral disease and progress of their vaccination drive.
“The central government said that after June 21, it will supply vaccines free of cost in the country. The government has done this after the order of the Supreme Court. Better late than never. But even after June 21, where will the vaccines come from is a big question. There is a severe shortage of doses,” Kejriwal said while addressing reporters after he inspected the construction of an oxygen storage tank near Siraspur.
The chief minister on May 26 attacked the Centre over its decision to export vaccine doses to other countries rather than inoculating their own citizens. Kejriwal said the impact of the second wave of the pandemic would have been less and so many people would not have succumbed to the viral disease if vaccination was done on time.
Delhi has so far inoculated 5,732,699 beneficiaries against Covid-19 till now. Over 66,000 beneficiaries (66,175 to be exact) were administered vaccine doses on Wednesday.
After suspending vaccination for the 18-44 age group for over two weeks, the national capital finally started receiving vaccine doses. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Atishi said on Wednesday said the youth can now register themselves on the CoWin app and get themselves vaccinated.
Delhi has received 125,000 doses of Covishield and 20,000 doses of Covaxin for the 18-44 age group, Atishi said, adding that the present stock will last for another eight days. “The vaccination centres that were shut for youngsters due to the unavailability of vaccines for the past two weeks have been opened from Wednesday,” the AAP leader said while issuing the daily vaccination bulletin.
Kejriwal, meanwhile, on Monday launched a mass vaccination campaign called ‘Jahan Vote, Wahan Vaccination’ (Get vaccinated where you vote), in a bid to speed up the inoculation drive. He said the Delhi government plans to vaccinate all eligible beneficiaries above the age of 45 in the next one month.