Centre must provide free COVID vaccine to all: Punjab Minister

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Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister, Balbir Singh Sidhu (file photo)
Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister, Balbir Singh Sidhu (file photo)

Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], January 3 (ANI): Under the visionary leadership of Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, Punjab has been proactively taking prompt decisions with regard to day-to-day management of COVID-19 pandemic and Centre should provide free of cost Corona vaccine to Punjab in a stipulated time, said Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Sunday.

Punjab stated that Punjab has the capacity to vaccinate 4 lakh people in a day, stated a press release by the Information and Public Relations Department.

Balbir Sidhu said that stringent measures were taken from time to time with a view to control the pandemic.

"Now, Modi's Government cannot backtrack from its duty to supply the COVID vaccine. About 5,364 COVID related unfortunate deaths till date has happened in the State which is about 178 deaths per million, in comparison to Delhi where total 10,577 COVID-19 related deaths took place and their deaths per million is quite high at 528. We are in a way better position than other national capital. Punjab has a recovery rate of 95 per cent and active cases are declining day-by-day", the minister said.

Giving details on vaccination preparedness in the state, he said Punjab is fully prepared for the vaccination drive and state has a capacity of vaccinating 4 lakh people a day. Elaborating more on this, he said that State has established a robust storage capacity of 1 crore vaccines in state's own cold chain centres. He stated that Punjab has also achieved more than 95 per cent of routine vaccination of children which is highest in the country.

Balbir Singh Sidhu said that the ambit of the original scheme Ayushman Bharat of Government of India was limited to only 14 lakh families shortlisted as per Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) data-2011, while the Punjab Government led by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, decided to increase the number of families to about 40 lakhs.(ANI)