New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that preparations are underway in India to launch the world's largest vaccination drive against the deadly coronavirus.

Laying the foundation stone for AIIMS in Gujarat's Rajkot, PM Modi noted that coronavirus cases are decreasing in India with each passing day but urged citizens to take all necessary precautions.

"Earlier, I said, 'Dawai nahi toh dheelai nahi'. Now, I am saying 'Dawai bhi aur kadaai (caution) bhi'. Our mantra for the year 2021 is 'Dawai bhi aur kadaai bhi'," PM Modi said while stressing that 2020 has been "a year full of challenges".

He further said that "rumours spread quickly in India", adding that some people have already started spreading "irresponsible" rumours about COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country for "personal gains".

"I appeal to the people of the country that fight against COVID-19 is the one against an unknown enemy. Be careful about such rumours and as responsible citizens refrain from forwarding messages on social media without checking," PM Modi said.

Saluting people who gave their lives in the line of duty, the Prime Minister said that the last day of 2020 is to remember India's doctors, health and frontline COVID warriors. He also said that 2020 has shown that "how effectively we can cope with the most difficult crisis when we are all united".

"Swasthya hi sampada hai (health is wealth), the year 2020 has taught us this well. It has been a year full of challenges. Farewell to the year 2020 with this new National Health Facility, highlights this year's challenges and also marks the New Year's priority," he said.

Over the last few days, coronavirus cases have been significantly decreasing in India. However, several states and union territories (UTs) have reimposed restrictions ahead of new year celebrations due to the new strain of COVID-19 infection. According to Union Health Ministry, India has reported 25 cases of the mutant strain of COVID-19 so far.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma