The struggle of the Indian masses to survive in our sinking healthcare during the pandemic has not ended yet. From medical oxygen and hospital beds to medicines, nothing has come easily. The story is no different when it comes to the anti-COVID-19 vaccine availability in the country. To aid the process of vaccination, the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) announced their plan to procure vaccines worth 100 crores directly from the manufacturers and administer them to the people of Karnataka, on Friday.
With the BJP ruled central government failing to take into consideration the demand side of the vaccination beforehand and placing orders, then shifting the responsibilities to the state governments, the country’s vaccination drive has drastically slowed down relative to the initial stages.
“Modi and Yediyurappa Governments Have Collectively Failed”: Congress
In a press conference with Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Congress state president D.K. Shivakumar said that,
“Since Modi and Yediyurappa governments have collectively failed to vaccinate the masses, we want to do it ourselves.”
The announcement by the Congress party has come two days after the Karnataka state health department said through a statement that the government will be suspending the vaccination drive for the age group 18-44 from May 14th till further orders due to lack of vaccines in the state.
Under the current vaccine policy in India, only the central and state governments, hospital units, and industries hold the permission to procure vaccines directly. The Congress has pointed towards the failure of the central and the state government of the state to vaccinate its people swiftly and requests the government at both levels to give them permission for vaccine procurement.
Shivakumar further added that “My appeal to the BJP to not let politics come in the way and in the spirit of Atmanirbhar Bharat allow Congress to directly procure and administer vaccines.”
With respect to the funding, the state committee has informed that out of the decided amount of 100 crores, 10 crores will be given by the Karnataka Congress Party Fund. Along with that, 90 crores will be arranged from the Congress MLA/MLC funds. The party’s state president emphasized that the entire purchase will be kept transparent and requested the Yediyurappa government for permission to utilize the MLA/MLC funds for the same.
According to the Karnataka state health bulletin, a total of 41,779 people tested positive for Coronavirus with 373 deaths on May 14. With 5,98,605 active cases, the state is under lockdown till May 24th.