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Can’t roll out 18+ vaccine drive today, say 13 states

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Aditi Tandon

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 30

Ahead of the adult Covid inoculation drive which is scheduled to begin on Saturday, several states said they did not have the vaccine stocks to roll out the plan even as the Centre acknowledged that any new programme took time to stabilise.

Punjab, Delhi, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal categorically stated that while they had placed orders with the Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech, the doses were not yet available for May 1 rollout.

More than 2.5 crore people in the 18-44 age group have already registered on CoWIN platform and are awaiting appointments even as India witnessed another high of nearly 4 lakh daily cases.

The inoculation drive started on January 16 with the target of covering 30 crore priority people at the earliest.

The coverage has been much less with Prime Minister Narendra Modi today telling a meeting of the council of ministers that over 15 crore doses had been given.

The meeting took note of Covid as “once-in-a-century crisis” that has challenged the world. The PM urged union ministers to stay in touch with people of their respective regions, help them and keep getting their feedback on the situation.

He also stressed upon the “need to ensure that issues at the local level are promptly identified and addressed”.

Hospitals remained stretched to breaking point after over 3 lakh new cases for the ninth day in a row.

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The Civil Aviation Ministry on Friday permitted the Telangana Government to use drones for experimental delivery of vaccines within the visual line of sight.

Production slow

  • 50cr Population in 18-44 age group
  • 100cr Doses needed to vaccinate all
  • 8cr Per month vax production in India
  • 1year It’ll take to inoculate all in this group
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