Special drives in central Delhi to vaccinate all from marginalised sections against Covid

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New Delhi, Jul 5 (PTI) Starting June, the district administration in central Delhi has been running a special drive to vaccinate people from marginalised sections of the society against COVID-19, including sex workers, transgenders, homeless people, migrants and construction workers, to ensure that no one is left behind.

Under District Magistrate Akriti Sagar, the administration has joined hands with several NGOs, including Doctors For You, and held camps to inoculate such people and provide them free medical care and ration. In association with Kinnar Bharati, an NGO working for the third gender, the district administration has so far organised three special camps at Happy School in Daryaganj to vaccinate transgenders.

'We have identified 500 transgenders, of which 204 have been vaccinated so far. Some have taken the jabs at centres near their home,' said Ravikant Vinayak Yadav, OSD to Central Delhi district magistrate.

There are around 900 sex workers in Central Delhi. Around 200 of them left for their hometown during the lockdown, Yadav said.

'Special vaccination drives are being conducted for sex workers at Anglo Arabic School, Ajmeri Gate, since June 22. So far, more than 240 of them have been inoculated,' he said. Hopefully, all identified sex workers and transgenders will be vaccinated by second week of July, the official said.

Since such people are spread over a large area, including slums, identifying them and getting them vaccinated is a tough job.

'We decided to work with NGOs who have been dealing with such marginalized sections of society to eliminate the element of insecurity and social bias which creates vaccine hesitancy,' Yadav said.

The administration also organised special camps for priests and sadhus and their families at Maa Jhandewali temple where more than 200 beneficiaries have been vaccinated so far.

Another 45 such beneficiaries got vaccine jabs during a special drive at CGHS dispensary, Chitragupta Road. The district administration is working with Aashray NGO and Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) to vaccinate homeless people.

DUSIB has 78 centres in central Delhi and 905 people take refuge in them. Of these, around 750 have got vaccine doses, according to official data.

Authorities set up a special vaccination centre at Yamuna Pushta night shelter near Nigam Bodh Ghat for homeless people in June end. Another camp was set up at a shelter home in Roshanara.

With the help of the labour department, the district administration will be vaccinating around 2,500 construction workers at special camps set up at different construction sites in central Delhi this week, Yadav said.

Also, special camps will be held to vaccinate Tibetan refugees this week.

According to official data, 84.5 lakh vaccine doses have been administered in Delhi since the inoculation exercise started on January 16. More than 19 lakh people have received both the doses.

In the 18-44 age group, around 92 lakh people are eligible for vaccination against COVID-19 in Delhi. The city has 57 lakh people aged above 45.

In central Delhi, 8.89 lakh jabs have been provided and over 2 lakh people have been fully vaccinated so far. PTI GVS TDS TDS

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