More than 500 NRIs receive COVID-19 vaccine

The special drive was organised at Canara Girl’s High School auditorium in Mangaluru on Friday.  

Continuing the drive to vaccinate non-resident Indians (NRIs), who are heading to work or study abroad, the Dakshina Kannada district administration and Indian Red Cross Society vaccinated more than 500 people during the fourth round of the special vaccination drive for NRIs held at Canara Girl’s High School auditorium in Mangaluru on Friday.

The special vaccination drive was taken up following a demand from NRIs for two doses of the vaccine to enable them to immediately report back for duty or to study abroad. The first round was held on June 6. Following the Central government’s permission to relax the gap for the second dose of Covishield vaccine for NRIs to four weeks, further rounds of vaccination are being held.

This special drive is in addition to the facility to vaccinate NRIs, who are recognised as priority group, at Urban Primary Health Centres (UPHC), PHCs and taluk hospitals in the district.

On Friday, several students, seamen and others bound abroad lined up to fill priority group form wherein details of work or about the overseas institution where they are enrolled have to be given. While most of them had registered their names on the link provided on the district administration’s website (, some had come directly to the vaccination centre.

After verification of forms, they were signed by Resident Medical Officer of Government Wenlock Hospital Julian Saldanha, the district nodal officer, to certify NRIs who need immediate vaccination. A team of health workers vaccinated the beneficiaries.

Among those who received the vaccine was 22-year-old Abdul Khader, a master in a merchant vessel associated with a US shipping firm. Khader, a resident of Thokkottu, has completed three months of stay at home and has to report for duty by the end of July. “I was among the group that our Seafearers’ Association arranged to get the first dose of paid vaccine in May. Some left soon after to get quarantined before reporting for duty. I stayed back to take the second dose,” he said.

Samuel Roshan, 19, has to report to a shipping firm in Hong Kong in July for an 18-month internship, which is a part of his diploma course in marine science, which he is pursuing from an institution in New Delhi. He got his first dose at a private hospital and the second dose on Friday. He thanked the personnel at the document verification desk for helping him link his vaccination details with his passport number, which is essential to get clearance from the Hong Kong firm.

Among the many who received the first dose of vaccine was Preethi C.N., who is set to return to Lancaster University in August to continue her doctorate in law.

Mangaluru City South MLA D. Vedavyas Kamath visited the vaccination centre on Friday. Shantharam Shetty, Chairman of Indian Red Cross Society, Dakshina Kannada; its Secretary S.A. Prabhakar Sharma; Chairman of its Disaster Management Sub Committee Yatish Baikampady; and other members and volunteers of the Society were involved in the special drive, along with the Bank of Baroda.

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Printable version | Jul 24, 2021 10:50:09 AM |

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