Covid-19 vaccination drive: Delhi crosses 10 million doses mark, says Kejriwal
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal announced on Saturday that 10 million (1 crore) people have received a shot of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine. This comes days after Maharashtra crossed the milestone, becoming the first such state in the country.
The difference between Maharashtra and Delhi, however, is that the former administered both the doses of Covid-19 vaccine to 10 million of its population, whereas Arvind Kejriwal announced at a press conference today that 74 lakh people of the national capital have received one vaccine jab.
"The 1 crore jabs were given to around 74 lakh people. Out of these, 26 lakh have been administered both the doses, while the rest have been given one shot of the vaccine," the Delhi chief minister said.
"Delhi has a population of around 2 crore, and 1.5 crore are above the age of 18 and eligible for vaccination. So, out of 1.5 crore, 74 lakh have been administered at least one shot. This means, 50 per cent of the national capital's population has received at least one vaccine shot," Kejriwal added.
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief also said that the healthcare staff in Delhi are working day and night to administer Covid-19 jabs to eligible people. "I want to congratulate and thank all those people," said Kejriwal.
The chief minister also said that the people in Delhi are very excited to get a shot of the vaccine.
Kejriwal then pointed out that the Delhi government is not able to scale up the daily vaccination number due to a shortage in supply. "We have not gone beyond 70,000 jabs daily because there is a shortage of vaccines. If we get enough supply, we have the capacity to inoculate 3 lakh people daily in Delhi."
The chief minister said he is in constant touch with the central government and hoped that Delhi and other states will get enough vaccine doses to scale up the ongoing drive.
This comes on a day when the Centre said that more than 31 million unutilised vaccine doses are still available with states and union territories (UTs). The Union health ministry said that 487.8 million vaccine doses have been provided to states and UTs so far through all sources and further 68,57,590 doses are in the pipeline. Of this, the total consumption including wastage is 45,82,60,052 doses.
The Delhi government, meanwhile, is trying to push ahead with its vaccination drive through various innovative strategies. It has started a free pick up and drop off bus service leading to different schools turned into vaccination centres.
Delhi’s vaccination rates have been erratic since June 21, when the Centre took over control of purchasing and distributing vaccines to states, a change from the earlier policy, when states were buying doses for those aged between 18 and 45 at a separate, higher price.
The national capital saw peaks of over 200,000 jabs a day thrice since the policy change on June 21, but on an average, the jabs have not gone beyond the 70,000 mark.