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Congress Blames Centre, TRS Regime For Vaccine Crunch

Congress leader Shabbir Ali today castigated the BJP-led Centre and the TRS-led state government for the "huge shortage" of Covid-19 vaccines in the state.
Hyderabad | 15th April 2021
Congress leader and former minister Mohammed Ali Shabbir today lashed out at the BJP-led Centre and the TRS-led state government in Telangana for the "huge shortage" of Covid-19 vaccines in the state.

"Both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao are too busy with election campaigns to address the rising number of Covid-19 cases and fatalities. Their only focus is on winning elections at any cost. With this behaviour, they have proved that they are least concerned about the deteriorating public health situation in the state and the nation. It is then hardly surprising that both leaders appear to have no clue about the huge shortage of vaccines. This is greatly concerning since the supply crunch is bound to worsen the ongoing pandemic," Shabbir Ali said in a media statement.

The leader pointed out that those who had taken the first dose of the Covaxin or Covishield vaccines needed to take the second dose within a specific time period, and claimed, "As per the guidelines prescribed by the Union Ministry of Health, the second dose of Covaxin can be taken within four to six weeks after the first. Similarly, the second dose of Covishield must be taken within six to eight weeks of the first. The ministry has clearly stated that both doses should be taken within the recommended time period for more effective protection from Covid-19. It has also specified that both the doses must be of the same vaccine. However, lakhs of people who took the first dose will now likely miss the deadline for the second dose due to the huge vaccine shortage."

Talking about his own experience, he said that he had taken the first dose of Covaxin on March 13 and was supposed to get the second dose on April 11.

"When I enquired with the Apollo Hospital in Jubilee Hills, where I took the first dose, I was told that the vaccine was unavailable and was asked to check for its availability at other hospitals. However, no other hospital had supplies of Covaxin either. Finally, I was informed that as against the requirement of 900 doses, the hospitals in Telangana had only received 200. Therefore, they were administering the doses on a first-come-first-serve basis. I was fortunate to be able to get my second dose just two days before the end of the stipulated time period," the Congress leader fumed.

"The situation in government vaccination centres is even worse. While lakhs of people wait in queues to get inoculated, the current supply does not touch the thousands. Why did PM Modi and CM KCR not anticipate this situation? They give their 100% when it comes to winning elections. But when it comes to saving people's lives, they do not seem to be able to display the same kind of commitment. On top of the existing shortage, the Centre was not even been able to approve other alternative vaccines to ameliorate the shortage issue in a timely fashion. In fact, when Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had suggested that other vaccines that had been approved by other nations be permitted in India as well, the leaders of the BJP had not only criticised him but had also implied that he would get commissions from foreign vaccine makers. Now that some alternative vaccines have been approved, I would like to know how much commission the BJP got for sanctioning the use of the same," he added.

Shabbir Ali then advised CM KCR to stop thinking about politics for a while, and asked him to start concentrating on saving lives.
filed in:  Telangana, Telangana Congress, Shabbir Ali, KCR, TRS, Centre, Coronavirus, Health, Healthcare, Epidemics, Vaccines
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