Right to life also for those without internet, provide walk-in vaccines to all: Rahul Gandhi urges Centre


New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Thursday demanded that every person walking into a COVID-19 vaccination centre should get the jab, arguing that those who do not have access to the internet also have the right to life.

Congress has been battling for vaccines for the poor, especially those living in far-flung and rural areas, who do not have digital access or smartphones. The opposition party has also been demanding that COWIN registration should not be mandatory for getting the Covid vaccine.

“Online registration is not enough for the vaccine. Every person walking in at a vaccination centre should get the vaccine. Those who do not have access to the internet also have the right to life,” he said in a tweet in Hindi.

 

 

Congress has been critical of the government’s vaccination policy and its handling of the Covid situation in the country.  The Centre had on Tuesday released the revised guidelines for the national COVID vaccination programme under which the central government will procure 75 per cent of the vaccines being produced by the manufacturers in the country. 

According to the notification issued by the Centre, the revised guidelines will be implemented from June 21 and “will be reviewed from time to time”.

“The government of India will procure 75 per cent of the vaccines being produced by the manufacturers in the country. The vaccines procured will continue to be provided free of cost to States/UTs as has been the case from the commencement of the National Vaccination Programme. These doses will be administered by the States/UTs free of cost to all citizens as per priority through Government Vaccination Centres,” the notification said. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Monday announced a centralised procurement system for Covid-19 vaccines, beginning from June 21, with 25 per cent of the procurement being made available for the private sector, as well as free vaccinations for everyone above the age of 18.

He had also announced a cap of Rs 150 on the amount private hospitals can charge over the cost of the purchase of the vaccine from the manufacturer. In respect of the vaccine doses provided free of cost by the Government of India to the States, the Centre said that the vaccination will be prioritised as the following- Health Care Workers; Front Line Workers; Citizens more than 45 years of age; Citizens whose second dose has become due; and Citizens 18 years and above.

As per the guidelines, within the population group of citizens over 18 years of age, the Centre said States/UTs may decide their own prioritisation factoring in the vaccine supply schedule.

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