Letters

Letters to the Editor — May 14, 2021

PSU vaccine production

The mess over procuring vaccines, with some States now deciding to float global tenders, shows the pivotal role played by the public sector in the health care of the people at large. The villainous role some politicians played in closing vaccine production units in the public sector, including the universally known Pasteur Institute, is to blame. Though they are limping back, crucial time has been lost.

S.S. Rajagopalan,

Chennai

Vaccine issues

It is a sorry state of affairs that some States are now having to suspend vaccination for those in the age group of 18-44 as there is no vaccine stock. As things stand today, the central government’s vaccine policy is falling apart with chaos evident in supply and pricing. That some States are now preparing to float global tenders for the supply of COVID-19 vaccines highlights the level of frustration.

J.P. Reddy,

Nalgonda, Telangana

My wife and I, 67 years and 69 years, respectively, had our first dose of ‘Covishield’ on March 11, and our second on April 22 on completion of six weeks from the date of the first dose — the official norm of inter-dose interval.

There are now media reports that this norm has been or is to be changed to 12 to 16 weeks. If this is true, what is the impact on us and scores of others who received the second dose six weeks from the date of the first dose? Will the ICMR likely prescribe a third dose for us and others in our category? Can we reasonably presume that the stretch in inter-dose interval is just an administrative strategy to control the scramble for the second dose in view of the heavy shortage of vaccines? I am assuring myself that the ICMR is the competent body to handle such issues and would offer its advice on a scientific basis.

P.G. Chacko,

Bengaluru

The government should provide free diagnosis, treatment and, in the event of the unfortunate, the expenses too.

I wonder why some of our political leaders, knowing that the pandemic has assumed the nature of a ‘human catastrophe’, failed to make such a plea to the Prime Minister. The Opposition’s petition (Page 1, May 13), by adding issues such as the Central Vista and farm laws apart from making insinuations against the Prime Minister, seems to reduce the gravity of the main demand — “free, universal vaccination”. The fact that Opposition leaders have not supported a single policy or programme of the government of the day also appears to question their sincerity.

P.R.V. Raja,

Pandalam, Kerala

It is clear that providing for private sector sale of the vaccine is not only discriminatory but likely to prove wasteful too. A pandemic is surely no time to go for the statistically neat sounding formula of 50-25-25. State governments and the Opposition must also bear its share of the blame for having demanded a full roll-out of the vaccine, unmindful of its availability. A more reasonable and fair mechanism would have been to gradually increase the range of the age-groups eligible for vaccination. Whatever be the way ahead, the apartheid of digital and resource mandatoriness for availing vaccination has to go.

Firoz Ahmad,

New Delhi

Victory and after

Neither the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal nor the Left Democratic Front in Kerala can afford to be lulled into complacency by their creditable wins in the Assembly elections. The significant changes in the narrative forced by the Bharatiya Janata Party on others should be worrisome. Moreover, going by the recent happenings in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Puducherry, it may not be surprising if the BJP lets loose, especially in West Bengal, its money power and official machinery at its disposal to gain power through the back door.

Manohar Alembath,

Kannur, Kerala


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Printable version | Jun 14, 2021 3:22:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/letters-to-the-editor-may-14-2021/article34552531.ece

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