New Delhi, Feb 22 (IANS) Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday reviewed the progress of Covid-19 vaccination drive to check the public health response as the second dose is now being administered to healthcare and frontline workers across the country and preparations are in final stage for rollout of the third phase of the world's biggest inoculation exercise.
The meeting came as when India's cumulative vaccination coverage has crossed 1.14 crore recipients. The vaccination drive was started on January 16 for healthcare workers and frontline workers estimated to be around 3 crore.
As the third phase of the vaccination drive is to start in March to cover those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities, numbering around 27 crore, Shah chaired the meeting at his Home Ministry office in presence of Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan to review the status of Covid-19, along with preparedness of the states and UTs for Covid vaccination.
The meeting was also attended by NITI Aayog member V.K. Paul, the Cabinet Secretary, the Principal Secretary to PM, the Home Secretary, the Health Secretary, the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Director, AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria, and other senior officials.
India's drugs regulator on January 3 approved Oxford Covid-19 vaccine Covishield, manufactured by the Pune-based Serum Institute, and the indigenously-developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country.
Over 11 lakh people so far has been administered two dozes of Covid vaccines so far amid reports of upward trend in cases in the past one week. The country reported 14,199 new cases in the last 24 hours on Monday with the overall tally mounting to 1,10,05,850 as per the Health Ministry's latest data. With fresh 83 deaths due to the disease, the overall toll has touched to 1,56,385.
As per latest inputs, a total of 1,14,24,094 doses of corona vaccine were administered across the country till Monday.
According to the Union Health Ministry, India has become the fastest nation in terms of the vaccine doses administered, even though many countries had launched their vaccination campaigns much earlier.