Rajasthan CM rubbishes BJP claims of vaccine wastage in state
Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Friday rubbished the allegations from Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that the state had wasted 1.15 million Covid vaccine doses. “By levelling such allegations, the BJP is working to break the morale of our Corona warriors, who have been working for 14 months now. I will appeal to the leaders of the Opposition not to do such negative politics during the time of pandemic,” he tweeted.
Senior BJP leaders, including Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, have alleged that Rajasthan has wasted 1.15 million [11.5 lakh] vaccine doses.
He said according to the data recorded on the CoWIN app, 16,367,230 people have been vaccinated in the state till May 26. Of these, 338,000 doses were wasted, which is just 2%. This is much lower than the national average of 6% and the 10% of wastage permitted by the Government of India.
The chief minister attributed this incorrect figure to technical glitches in eVIN, the software for tracking vaccination. For this reason, the total number of vaccines on eVIN was stated to be 17,001,220, which is not correct, he said.
Similarly, he pointed out, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand were also reported to have recorded vaccine wastage of 30.2% and 37.3%, respectively. However, he said, the chief ministers and health ministers of both the states reported 0.95% and 4.65% wastage respectively. “It seems that in the time of the epidemic, the Central government is deliberately trying to mislead the public,” he said.
He pointed out that in the May 21 video conference, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan had admitted to technical glitches in CoWIN, leading to inflated percentages. Gehlot said Harsh Vardhan had then assured the states that the Centre would discuss the issue with individual states to get the correct figures before releasing the data.
He said that the BJP-led Centre failed to provide the vaccine and was trying to shift the blame on the states. “I will appeal to the Opposition leaders in Rajasthan to pressure the Centre in the interest of the state, so that we get more doses of the vaccine. The Centre should also ensure free universal vaccination. Rajasthan tops the country in vaccination and will continue to do its best work even further,” said the CM.
However, BJP spokesperson Mukesh Pareek insisted that the CM should accept that a large quantity of vaccine doses were wasted in the state.