Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said Thursday that Delhi did not have enough vaccines, as the vaccination drive for all adults begins on Saturday.
“We don’t have enough vaccines. We have requested for procurement of vaccines from the respective companies. Despite all preparations being made, availability of vaccines is inevitable for the inoculation to begin. As soon as these things are made clear and we receive the vaccines, we will let you know in a couple of days or so. We haven’t received the schedule from companies yet, which includes how many vials will reach on which dates,” he said.
So far, Delhi has given the first dose of the vaccine to over 30 lakh people. Of these, a little under 6 lakh people have got both doses, data shared by the government says.
Delhi’s estimated population is close to 2 crore.
As per the Centre’s guidelines, in the first phase, vaccines were available only to healthcare workers and frontline workers. In the second phase, those above the age of 60 and between the ages of 45 and 59 with co-morbid conditions were eligible to take the shot.
The third phase of the mass immunisation drive kicked off on April 1 with Centre allowing states to vaccinate all people above the age of 45 years of age..
While registration for vaccination opened on Wednesday, vaccine slots are not being booked presently.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also held a meeting on the vaccination drive on Thursday. A statement issued by the CM’s office after the meeting stated that orders for 3 lakh vaccine doses have been placed already, while the rest will be placed soon.
“The officials intimated that the work for the order and procurement of the vaccine is in progress. The first lot of the vaccine doses will be received soon. Orders for 50 lakh vaccine doses are being placed,” it said.
Kejriwal had said earlier this week that financial approvals to buy 1.34 crore vaccines had been granted.
In the meeting, the plan to vaccinate all adults in Delhi was discussed, where Kejriwal said that the government will set up vaccination centres on a large scale to vaccinate all eligible people in the next three months.
The CM also tweeted, “Had a meeting with officials on vaccination drive in Delhi. Prepared a plan to vaccinate all above 18 years in the next 3 months. We will set up vaccination centres on a large scale. All eligible people must come forward to get vaccinated.”
Kejriwal also took the second shot of the vaccine on Thursday.