'If Pakistan attacks India...': Arvind Kejriwal's fresh salvo at Centre over vaccine procurement
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Questioning the Central government on the shortage of vaccines in the country, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal used the analogy of ‘Pakistan attacking India’ to ask the Centre whether states will be left on their own to battle the situation.
The Chief Minister on Wednesday said, "Why isn't this country buying vaccines? We can't leave it to individual states. We are at war against COVID-19. If Pakistan attacks India, will the centre leave states to defend themselves? Will Uttar Pradesh buy its own tanks or Delhi its own guns?"
Kejriwal called upon the Centre to play its part in the vaccination drive and help states to procure the Covid-19 vaccines to inoculate the people in the national capital and across the country. He said the Centre must not leave it on states to deal with manufacturers to get the Covid vaccines.
The CM also said that unlike many countries India has already delayed its vaccination drive by six months which is a grave cause of concern. If the country would have stocked its vaccines from the start, many deaths could have been prevented in the second wave according to Kejriwal.
Under the Centre's new "liberalised" vaccination policy states are now asked to independently procure 50 per cent of their vaccines. The Delhi government reached out to Pfizer and Moderna pharma companies to get the Covid-19 vaccines. However, the US pharma giants refused to supply the vaccines stating they would deal with the Centre only.
Earlier, Covaxin’s manufacturer Bharat Biotech also refused to supply vaccines to Delhi citing the Centre's directives and limited availability. Kejriwal urged the Central government to provide the Covid-19 vaccines for states and said it’s no time to compete with each other.
"This is a time for the country to work together and not for states to compete among themselves for vaccines. I request the Prime Minister - we can't do the job that is not ours (arranging for vaccines). You get us the vaccines, we will do our job (vaccinating people)," Kejriwal said.
Meanwhile, Delhi recorded 1,491 fresh coronavirus cases and 130 fatalities on Wednesday, while the positivity rate declined to 1.93 per cent. This is the 4th time in a row when the daily cases in Delhi remained below 2,000.
Posted By: Talibuddin Khan