Mumbai

Uddhav Thackeray seeks permission from PM Modi to procure vaccines from various manufacturers

A poster pasted outside the NESCO Jumbo Covid Centre, Goregaon in Mumbai, Tuesday, May 4, 2021.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking permission to procure COVID-19 vaccines from other manufacturers to overcome the vaccine shortage faced by the State.

“The state of Maharashtra is willing to procure the requisite stock of vaccines in a single procurement if possible, so as to safeguard our citizens and to give boost to India’s vaccination program. However, the producers do not have enough stocks. If the states are allowed to procure from other manufacturers as well, we would be able to cover a larger population in a shorter time and held reduce the impact of the possible third wave of covid,” said Mr Thackeray in his letter.

He added that the ICMR may set the medical framework for the respective FDAs of each State, within which we may procure the various vaccines available to the world in this fight against COVID-19.

Mr Thackeray has also requested the Prime Minister to allow States to set up a separate mobile application on the lines of CoWin for the age group of 18 to 44. “CoWin app seeing the sudden surge of the number of citizens wanting to register nationally, there is a fear about the app malfunctioning or crashing, as it did on day 1 of registrations for the said age group,” he said.

Coronavirus updates | May 8, 2021

According to the CM, the separate app developed by States where the data can be shared with the Union government’s Ministry of Health or a CoWin app for each State developed and assigned by the Central government.

“This would ensure better interface and experience for the citizens who are really keen to the vaccine shot,” said Mr Thackeray.

The CM’s letter comes on a day when Mr Modi held a telephonic conversation with him and congratulating the State on tackling the COVID situation in the State in an effective manner.

Earlier in the day, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) had said that the COVID vaccination program in Maharashtra has almost come to a standstill due to a shortage of vaccines.

“Over four and half lakh individuals who have taken the first dose of the vaccine are not able to get the second dose despite being due for it. This is because Maharashtra is not getting vaccines,” said the State’s Minority Affairs minister and senior NCP leader Nawab Malik.

Despite the shortage of vaccines, Maharashtra tops the chart of vaccinations in the country with over 1.72 crore shots being delivered out of which around 1.41 crore are first doses and 30.81lakh are those with both the doses.

Mr Malik said that not only those above 45 years, but even those between 18 to 45 are not getting vaccine. “Modi government is busy in making speeches and making announcements only. Maharashtra is facing injustice on all quarters. We are not getting oxygen, vaccines and remdesivir. Is it being done purposely to defame the State government?” he asked.

The minister said that several high courts and the Supreme Court are ensuring that the Centre is answerable to the supply of oxygen. “With over four lakh cases coming daily, the Centre appears clueless,” he said, adding that despite the oxygen quota being fixed for States, the supply is not happening.

“Maharashtra’s 50MT oxygen quota from Karnataka’s Bellary has been stopped. Remdesivir is not being supplied to States. Centre seems to be in denial mode regarding this,” he alleged.


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Printable version | Jun 18, 2021 12:28:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/uddhav-thackeray-seeks-permission-from-pm-modi-to-procure-vaccines-from-various-manufacturers/article34513773.ece

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