India opened registrations for its vaccination program for adults between 18 to 44 years of age on 28 April, and in some states, the vaccination for the 18+ population started on 1 May.
Unlike adults above the age of 45 years, walk-in vaccination was not allowed; all the users had to book a slot to get their first dose of vaccine.
Still, many people are struggling to book a slot for the vaccine despite checking the CoWin website and other apps for this purpose.
Telegram bot developed by two students of Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) Delhi, Paras Mehan and Rohan Rajpal, can help users find the availability of vaccine slots.
Another bot developed by Abhinav Sonkar can come in handy while looking for slots by providing their Pincode. Abhinav - a software engineer based in Netherlands states that his bot resolves CoWin's issues like the portal not being very user friendly, slots in busier districts getting booked very quickly, no notifications so user has to keep checking and accessibility features like multi-lingual etc.
Abhinav states that his bot addresses some of these issues. It tracks all the districts requested by users every 5 minutes, calls the Cowin APIs and notifies them. It detects the local language from the pincode and responds in both English and local language. Over 3,000 users are registered for alerts currently.
Telegram app users can search for slots by providing their Pincode or district name or both.
"The bot then notifies once the slot is made available on the CoWIN portal. The message has information on which centre has the available slots, the number of slots open, and the date of availability", Paras said about the function of their bot as per a report in The New Indian Express.
Telegram users may simply search the following:
These bots provide the slot openings which can be booked at https://selfregistration.cowin.gov.in/