Alarmed at alleged instances of COVID-19 vaccination camps being organised by unauthorised people in some pockets in Kolkata, the Union Health Ministry has written and directed the local administration to submit a report within the next two days.
Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, said in the communication that “in view of the instances of COVID vaccination camps being organized allegedly by unauthorized people, it’s requested that the matter be urgently enquired into and the factual position about the serious allegations be clarified in next 2 days.’’
The letter noted that in some of these camps, notably in Kasba locality of the Kolkata Municipal area, none of the beneficiaries received any vaccination certificates generated from Co-WIN, giving rise to apprehensions about the genuineness of these camps.
Mr. Bhushan has said all vaccination sessions for COVID-l9 have to be organised through the Co-WIN portal and all vaccinations recorded on it.
“You are also aware that vaccination certificates are generated from Co-WIN after the vaccination events are successfully recorded by the vaccinators and that these certificates are then given to the beneficiaries in digital or physical form,’’ he said in the letter.
Advice to States
The Health Ministry had been advising States repeatedly that vaccination certificates must be issued to the beneficiaries.
“Non-issuance of these certificates therefore does lead to apprehension of fake vaccination camps and also raises doubts on the contents of injections delivered in such camps. Such instances, if not promptly enquired into and suitably addressed,’’ said Mr. Bhushan.
The Ministry had also written Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Odisha, Puducherry, West Bengal, Sikkim and Manipur, asking them to ensure that districts that continued to show high transmission of COVID-19 would be provided immediate intervention to bring down the positivity rate.
More than 32.13 crore (32,13,75,820) vaccine doses have been provided by the Centre to the States/UTs so far, according to a release issued by the Ministry on Wednesday.
This, it said, had been given through free of cost channels and through direct state procurement category. Of this, the total consumption, including wastages was 31,40,75,654 doses (as per data available at 8 a.m. on Wednesday). More than 73 lakh (73,00,166) balance and unutilised doses were still available with the States/UTs to be administered. Furthermore, more than 24,65,980 doses were in the pipeline and would be received by the States/UTs within the next 3 days, it added.