New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday held a review meeting with chief ministers on the current COVID-19 situation in the country and directed the states to remain on alert to prevent a rise in the cases. The Prime Minister said that the COVID-19 challenge has not been surpassed yet.

PM Modi lauded India's management of the COVID-19 crisis as compared to other countries. However, he said that despite managing the situation well, some states are currently witnessing a rise in the cases.

"Despite managing the COVID crisis well as compared to other countries, we can see cases' uptick in states now. We have to stay alert. It's clear that the COVID challenge has yet not been surpassed," PM Modi said.

"Our scientists and experts are continuously monitoring the national and global situation. We have to work on their suggestions with a pre-emptive, pro-active and collective approach," he said.

Stopping the infection at the very beginning has been our priority as well and it should remain the same even today.

"We have to implement our strategy of Test, Track and Treat equally effectively. In the current situation of coronavirus, it is necessary that we have 100 per cent RT-PCR test for patients admitted in hospitals who are serious influenza cases," he said.

Several chief ministers, including West Bengal's Mamata Banerjee, Chhattisgarh's Bhupesh Baghel, Delhi's Arvind Kejriwal and Punjab's Bhagwant Mann, participated in the interaction.

During the meeting, the Prime Minister said that 96 per cent of India's adult population has been vaccinated with the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

"It's a matter of pride for every citizen that 96 per cent of our adult population has been vaccinated with the first dose of the vaccine and 85 per cent of the eligible population above 15 years of age inoculated with the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine," he said.

PM Modi also urged the states to conduct safety audits of all hospitals to prevent fire incidents amid the ongoing heatwave in some parts of the country.

"I urge all states to get safety audits of all hospitals done on a priority basis to prevent fire incidents which have been increasing amid the heatwave. Our response time should also be minimal," he said.

PM Modi said that covid vaccination of all eligible children at the earliest is a priority for the government and specialised programmes will need to be conducted for it in schools.

Asserting that vaccine is the biggest protective shield against the virus, Modi said Covid vaccination of all eligible children at the earliest is a priority for the government and specialised programmes will need to be conducted in schools.

He said awareness of parents and children is very important in this regard.

His remarks come a day after Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said India's drug regulator has granted restricted emergency use authorisation for Biological E's COVID-19 vaccine Corbevax for those aged five to 12 years and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin for children in the age group of six to 12 years.

Meanwhile, India recorded 2,927 fresh infections in a day which pushed the case tally to 4,30,65,496 while the active caseload increased to 16,279, according to Union Health Ministry data on Wednesday. The death toll has climbed to 5,23,654 with 32 more fatalities, the data said.

Posted By: Subhasish Dutta