Harsh Vardhan clarifies on Covid-19 vaccine

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 26, 2021

India surpasses 3.5 lakh-mark in daily cases on Monday

Clearing the air about vaccination pricing under the government’s phase 3 liberalised and accelerated vaccination strategy for those above 18 years of age, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said Sunday that the Centre will continue giving vaccine doses from its 50 per cent quota to the States and Union Territories for free and they will continue to administer them.

Meanwhile, India reported the record 3.5 lakh daily Covid-19 cases during the last 24 hours, taking the active caseload to an all-time high of over 28 lakh.

Vardhan said several questions are being raised on the ‘balance 50 per cent quota’. “That is why I have chosen to clarify here that this balance 50 per cent quota grants flexibility for States. Many States had requested that the vaccination process be opened up for them. Now, this ‘balance 50 per cent quota’ shall give them the freedom to vaccinate groups that they deem as priority,” Vardhan said while further adding that the “balance 50 per cent quota” is also open for corporate and private sector to pool in their resources so that the combined effort of Team India can be deployed to vaccinate every adult in the earliest possible time.

The statement comes after Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech notified the prices at which they will sell the vaccine to States and private hospitals. While the former has earmarked the price of Covishield at ₹400 per dose for States and ₹600 for private hospitals, Bharat Biotech, has set the price of Covaxin at ₹600 per dose for States and ₹1,200 for private hospitals.

India is in the tight grip of Covid-19 pandemic, and the daily cases are refusing to shrink despite the government’s inoculation drive. So far, the government has administered 14,19,11,223 shots with 9,95,288 jabs given in the last 24 hours till 8:00 am on Monday.

India crossed 3.5 lakh mark in daily Covid19 cases at 3,52,991 on Monday with 2,812 deaths till Monday morning. Now, the cumulative coronavirus infections stand at 1,73,13,163 out of which active cases stood at 28,13,658, recovered cases were 1,43,04,382 and death toll was 1,95,123 in the last 24 hours, according to the Health Ministry data.

According to the government, ten States including Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Rajasthan are the worst-hit and report 74.53 per cent of the new cases.

Published on April 26, 2021

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