Row over TMC leader administering COVID vaccine at Asansol camp

·2-min read

Asansol (WB), Jul 3 (PTI) A Trinamool Congress leader administered COVID-19 vaccine to a woman at a vaccination camp in West Bengal's Paschim Bardhaman district on Saturday, stirring a row.

The incident happened in the Sitarampur village in Kulti.

Tabassum Ara, the former deputy mayor of the Asansol Municipal Corporation, took the syringe containing the vaccine from a health worker and administered it to one Rubiya Mahato.

Later, when questioned by reporters, Ara said that she did no such thing at the vaccination camp.

As a video of her administering the vaccine went viral, she said that she was helping to raise awareness about vaccination.

'I had no other intention, but to raise the awareness among the people. I have good knowledge about how to push insulin and this is quite similar to that,' she told PTI.

The state Health Department has sought a detailed report from the district's chief medical officer over the incident.

'We have asked the CMOH to file a detailed report. He has been asked how a non-medical person was allowed to administer the jab. This is a punishable offence,' a Health Department official said.

Hitting out at the ruling TMC, Union minister Babul Supriyo said that it seemed as if the state government has no control over its administrators.

'TMC's Tabassum Ara, a member of the administrative body of AMC, has vaccinated people herself and risked hundreds of lives... Will her political colour shield her from stern punishment?' the BJP's Asansol MP tweeted, tagging Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

State BJP president Dilip Ghosh also slammed the TMC over the incident.

'In a state where the chief minister knows everything -- from Engineering to Medicine -- it is in the fitness of things that her party members would also think in the same way. These acts show the real picture of the state,' he said.

TMC's deputy leader in Rajya Sabha Sukhendu Sekhar Roy said the district administration was looking into the matter.

'However, in our country quacks with no formal medical education are allowed to perform medical duty and in that context administering a vaccine by someone who does it to create awareness should not be dissected so much,' he said.

'But again, if I inject something to build awareness, the basic condition is I should know the medical procedure, I should know the process, I should have done such thing earlier,' Roy said. PTI SCH SUS SOM SOM

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