Bhubaneswar, Jun 7 (PTI) Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Monday thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for announcing free vaccination against COVID-19 for all the citizens above 18 years of age.
Patnaik, who had pleaded for a centralised vaccine procurement by the Government of India, in a twitter post said,'Every life is previous. No one is safe until everyone is vaccinated. As a nation we stand united in this fight against #COVID19 pandemic.
'Thank PM Shri @nerendramodi ji for making vaccination a national mission.' Odisha chief minister's reaction came after Modi's announcement of free vaccination for all adults in his address to the nation.
Earlier, the Odisha government has announced free of cost vaccination for the people in the age group of 18 years to 44 years after the centre allowed the states to take responsibility of the 25 per cent of the countrys population.
In its bid to procure vaccines, Odisha government floated a global e-tender to procure 3.8 doses of COVIDd-19 vaccines from manufacturers both inside the country and abroad.
However, only two bidders have participated in the tender despite the state government relaxing the norms of the tender terms and conditions.
As the international manufacturers expressed unwillingness to supply vaccine to the states, Odisha government had urged the centre to take responsibility of procuring vaccines from international market and the states will pay for the vaccines to be required for the people in the age group of 18-44 whose number is about 1.93 crore in Odisha.
The state has meanwhile procured some vaccines from both the Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech to inoculate its youth population.
About 8 lakh of the beneficiaries of this age group have been vaccinated free of cost by the state.
Patnaik had also written a letter to all the chief ministers to come to a consensus on central procurement of vaccines instead of states making competition for the vaccine doses in international market.
Odisha chief minister is, however, of the opinion that the states should be given flexibility to manage the vaccination programme keeping in view the local conditions instead of one guideline for all the states. PTI AAM SNS SNS