Mumbai: For the second consecutive day, there was unbridled chaos at all the vaccination centres across the city after the CoWin portal crashed early on Tuesday morning. Most of the beneficiaries had pre-registered on the portal but were unable to get slots, so they directly proceeded to the centres. Officials said there were many on-site registrations, resulting in huge chaos at the centres. It was later in the day before things fell into place.
Again, on Day 2, most senior citizens had to wait for more than two hours at the vaccine centres, with some of them being pushed back twice, despite being called in the afternoon to the vaccine centre at Sion hospital. “I had come early in the morning for vaccination to Sion hospital and I was given a token, as the CoWin portal had crashed. I was asked to come back in the afternoon. But when I reached the centre, it was chaos, with everyone pushing to get in. My wife and I were pushed around twice. Only when police interfered did matters come under control. But we were unsure whether we would get the vaccine or not,” said Satish Mehta, a beneficiary.
Meanwhile, 85-year-old Rukmini Gurbani, a resident of Bandra, who is suffering from a thyroid condition said she had to fight hard for vaccination, as the portal had stopped working and she decided to reach the centre for on-site registration. “When I reached the BKC vaccine centre, the situation was totally out of control, there was so much crowding. I had to wait for three hours to get the shot,” she said.
Dr Rajesh Dere, Dean, BKC Jumbo Vaccination Centre, said that the technical glitch in the CoWin portal had led to a huge crowd gathering at the vaccination centre. However, everything was brought under control with the help of police. “The glitch was resolved by 11.20am, and the crowd was brought under control. I request citizens to not panic and follow all Covid-19 appropriate norms throughout,” he said.
Dr Ramesh Bharmal, Dean, BYL Nair Hospital and medical director of the civic-run hospital, said, considering the enthusiasm of the senior citizens it was decided to conduct a vaccination drive for senior citizens at all the vaccine centres of the civic body. But they failed to anticipate the crash of the CoWin portal, forcing them to tackle the huge crowd of elderly people at all the centres. “Crowd management at the centres is very difficult, as no one listens to instructions. The CoWin portal crashed for two hours in the morning, following which we witnessed unexpected crowds at the centres and had to call police. However, after 1pm, everything was normal and all the senior citizens were happy they received their shots,” he said.