Fulfilling the commitment


The Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya had on Monday announced that India's vaccine manufacturers were expected to produce more than 30 crore doses in October for the domestic drive - and that the surplus supply would be used to fulfil the country's commitment towards the global fight against COVID. All this is being envisaged despite the fact that a large number of Indian citizens, especially in the young adult's bracket, is still bereft of the benefits of inoculation. For example, even in Uttar Pradesh, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi had in Varanasi praised Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath this July for his "dexterous tackling" of the COVID-19 pandemic and the "successful" vaccination drive, the situation on the ground is such that the State Government is unable to provide adequate number of jabs to people.
Union Government's decision to resume exporting and donating the "surplus" COVID jabs beginning October, after a three-month hiatus since it was launched on January 20, has raised eyebrows in the political and healthcare circles, with several people taking a swipe at it in private as to what else could be expected of an "insensitive dispensation" which didn't even dare acknowledge hundreds of deaths caused by the paucity and unavailability of oxygen in several hospitals across States during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
There were not enough vials or trained staff to inoculate all hopefuls, especially those queuing up for the first shot. If this is the state of affairs in the country's most populous State, and also the one which is governed by the party that also rules at the Centre, one can easily imagine how things must be panning out in the nation's remote areas or in those States that are being run by the Opposition parties. The threat of the pandemic's third wave is still very much looming and the powers that be must ensure that all Indians are vaccinated well before the Government considers exporting even the "surplus" jabs.

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