As several states received the first consignment of COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday, Health Ministry clarified that there is no question of discrimination against any state in the allocation of vaccine doses.
The Ministry said, "Full initial procurement amount of 1.65 cr doses of Covishield & Covaxin vaccines allocated to all States/UTs in the proportion of health care workers database. There is no question of discrimination against any State in the allocation of vaccine doses."
"This is the initial lot of supply of vaccine doses and would be continuously replenished in the weeks to come. Therefore, any apprehension being expressed on account of deficient supply is totally baseless and unfounded," it added.
India is all set to kick off the much-awaited vaccination drive against Covid-19 on January 16, 2021.
The roll-out of COVID-19 vaccine will provide priority to the healthcare workers and the frontline workers who are estimated to be around 3 cr, followed by those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities numbering around 27 cr.
India's drive against COVID-19 gathered momentum on Wednesday with planes carrying vaccines flying into airports across the country from where the precious cargo was dispatched to small cities and towns in readiness for the inoculation exercise beginning January 16.
From Assam to Goa and from Jammu and Kashmir to Kerala, the vaccines were carefully and swiftly transported to far corners of the country, a day after the first consignment of the Covishield vaccine from the Oxford/AstraZeneca stable rolled out of the Serum Institute of India manufacturing facility in Pune.
While SII moved about 56 lakh doses of Covishield to 13 cities, Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech said it had successfully transported the indigenous Covaxin, developed in collaboration with the ICMR and the National Institute of Virology, to 11 cities. It said it has donated 16.5 lakh doses to the Centre.
(With inputs from Agencies)