Centre distributing vaccines rationally, Bengal govt should avoid confrontation: governor

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Siliguri, May 14 (PTI) West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Friday defended the Centre's COVID-19 vaccine distribution mechanism saying it is being done 'very rationally' and alleged that the Trinamool Congress government is not doing what is required to fight the pandemic in the state.

The TMC dispensation has accused the BJP-led government at the Centre of discrimination over distribution of vaccines, claiming that some states are being given preference at the cost of others.

There has not been a day so far when vaccine stocks have run out in West Bengal, Dhankhar told a press conference in Siliguri in north Bengal.

'It (distribution of vaccine) is being done very rationally,' the governor said.

But it will not be understood by those who want to run the government through advertisements and headlines in newspapers, he said in an apparent reference to the Mamata Banerjee government.

'The crisis is not only in West Bengal but in the whole country and in the world. It has to be fought through cooperation among all,' Dhankhar said.

He urged the state government to shun confrontation.

'I don't think that the state government has not done what was required, but mutual confrontation should not be there,' the governor said.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee recently wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi alleging that the state is not getting the required quantity of vaccines from the Centre.

'We are giving priority to those second dose of vaccination. But we are not getting ample numbers of vaccines.

We have given requisition of three crore of vaccines and have got only a few lakh,' Banerjee said in her letter to Modi on May 6.

Till Thursday, at least 1,25,60,168 people have been inoculated in West Bengal, an official of the state health department said.

The official said that the state has received a total of 1,22,74,200 vaccine doses from the Government of India channel till May 9.

Long queues are seen in front of hospitals across the state as people wait to be inoculated, but several medical facilities have put up No Vaccine boards. PTI AMR SCH NN NN