Prime Minister Narendra Modi, launching India’s vaccination drive against novel coronavirus on Saturday, paid tribute to frontline workers and scientists and also urged citizens not to be affected by propaganda against the two Made in India vaccines against COVID-19.
The Prime Minister said that India’s coronavirus drive is based on humanitarian and very important principles and also laid emphasis on maintaining social distancing and the use of masks.
Speaking at the launch of the nationwide vaccination drive against the novel coronavirus via video conferencing, PM Modi said: “Everyone was asking as to when the vaccine will be available. It is available now. It has been made available in very little time. I extend my wishes to the citizens.”
PM Modi said that a vaccination drive on such a massive scale has never been conducted in history.
The COVID vaccine was administered to various healthcare workers across the states today. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath reviewed the COVID-19 vaccine administration at Balrampur hospital in Lucknow.
“102 health workers would receive the vaccine at the hospital today… The second dose is required after 28 days, and the vaccine will require 12-15 days to stimulate its effect. Even after getting the vaccine, wearing mask and social distancing are necessary,” said Adityanath.
On the other hand, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat also started the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in the state from Government Doon Medical College (GDMC) in Dehradun.
Appreciating the health care workers in the state, the Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat said, “I bow in front of the health care workers who worked for six to eight hours a day wearing PPE-kits during the ongoing pandemic.”
As many as 660 beneficiaries have received vaccine shot against COVID-19 in Pune, till 1 pm today, according to District Administration, Pune.
Meanwhile, expressing happiness over the beginning of the vaccination drive against the novel coronavirus, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said that there is no fear among the people about the vaccine.
The state of Punjab has received 2,04,500 doses of the Covishield vaccine. Over the next five days, 1.74 lakh health workers will receive the vaccine with 40,000 covered every day.
In another development, Manish Kumar, a sanitation worker who was the first person to receive COVID-19 vaccine jab at AIIMS, Delhi on Saturday said he will continue to fulfil his duties without hesitation.
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan was also present there when Kumar was administered the vaccine.
On the other hand, AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Singh Guleria and NITI Aayog member VK Paul were also administered the COVID-19 vaccine shot at AIIMS Delhi on the inaugural day of a nationwide roll-out of vaccination.
Meanwhile, the Indian Army said, Covid warriors received COVID-19 vaccine shots at Base Hospital, Delhi Cantt today. Vaccination conducted at Army Hospital (R&R), Armed Forces Clinic and Base Hospital.
A total of 8,100 healthcare workers at 81 locations across the national capital will be vaccinated against the novel coronavirus today, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on the first day of the nation-wide vaccination drive.
Two women doctors among 20 Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) medical officers, deployed in forward areas in Leh, were among the first to get a vaccine shot against COVID-19 on the first day of the nationwide vaccination drive.
Health workers were given COVID-19 vaccine shots in the Doda district, earlier today.
“I am very happy to be the first one to receive the vaccine. It’s a moment of joy, not fear. I urge all to take the COVID-19 vaccine,” Dr Rakesh, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Doda said.
In West Bengal, a Kolkata Police personnel received the COVID-19 vaccine shot at Kolkata Medical College and Hospital.
Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said that about one and a-half-years is needed to vaccinate everyone as there is 7 crore population in Rajasthan and 130 crore in the country. Therefore he has advised people to follow COVID-19 protocols even after vaccination. Vaccination would take place at 167 booths.
Serum Institute of India (SII) CEO Adar Poonawalla also received a shot of Covishield vaccine manufactured by his company.
The COVID vaccine distribution program was started in Hyderabad on Saturday.
The vaccination drive was inaugurated in the state by MoS Home Affairs Kishan Reddy and Health Minister Eatala Rajender at the Gandhi Hospital.
Other states and UT where the vaccination drive was launched today include Chhattisgarh, Puducherry, Goa, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also monitored the vaccination process and took updates on a real-time basis from centres across the country.
A total of 1,91,181 beneficiaries were vaccinated for COVID-19 on day one of the massive nationwide vaccination drive on Saturday, said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Billed as the world’s largest vaccination program, covering the entire length and breadth of the country, the drive aims to first inoculate millions of its healthcare and frontline workers and reach an estimated 3 crore people by the end of its first phase.
According to the Union Health Ministry, a dedicated 24×7 call centre–1075– has been established for addressing the queries related to COVID-19 vaccine rollout and Co-WIN Software.
The full initial procurement amount of 1.65 crore doses of Covishield and Covaxin vaccines against COVID-19 have been allotted to all States/UTs in the proportion of HEALTHCARE workers database, the ministry stated.