NEW DELHI: The Union Health Ministry is worried over the slow pace of Covid-19 vaccination, as those inoculated in the last six days are still short of 10 lakh, or to be exact, 9,99,065 at 6 PM on Thursday, with 1.93 lakh more taking the jab during the day.
Only health and frontline workers are being vaccinated. Odisha recorded the highest tally of 26,558 on Thursday, followed by Telangana 26,441, Karnataka 16,103, Bihar 15,798, Andhra Pradesh 15,507 and Haryana 15,491.
Sensing the hesitation and the apprehension about the vaccines' efficacy, PM Modi has decided to take the Covid-19 jab in the second phase of vaccination and asked the chief ministers who are over 50 to join him in then endeavour to mobilise the people.
Officials in the Prime Minister's office (PMO), however, said there was nothing new in this regard, since the PM had himself told the chief ministers -- just before the launch of the vaccination drive on January 16 -- that politicians would get their turn in the second phase when senior citizens are to be vaccinated.
They said no date is fixed for the PM and the chief ministers to get vaccinated, but the optics of the PM and the CMs getting the jab could go a long way in soothing the sceptics.
It is unclear whether the Prime Minister will take the Covishield vaccine or the indigenously developed Covaxin.
Meanwhile Kerala reported the maximum daily new cases of 6,815 out of 15,223 in the last 24 hours, followed by Maharashtra (3,015 new cases) and Chhattisgarh (594).
Maharashtra also recorded the highest (59) deaths in a single day, followed by Kerala 18, Delhi and Chhattisgarh 10 each and Telangana 9. A total of 151 deaths were reported in the country in 24 hours, raising India's death toll to 1,52,869. As many as 83% of new deaths were in eight states/Union Territories.
India's active cases on Thursday stood at 1,92,308 which is 1.81% of the total 106.11 lakh positive cases. There were 19,965 recoveries in 24 hours as against 15,223 new cases. The total recoveries at 102.66 lakh showed the recovery rate of 96.75%.