Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: In order to deal with vaccine hesitancy in Muslim-dominated areas of the state, the Maharashtra government will seek Bollywood star Salman Khan's help to encourage people to get vaccinated against the deadly COVID-19 infection, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said.

Maharashtra has been dealing with the issue of "vaccine hesitancy", especially in Muslim-dominated areas, due to fake claims against the vaccine.

"There is still some hesitancy in Muslim-dominated areas. We have decided to use Salman Khan and religious leaders to convince the Muslim community to take the vaccine," Tope was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

"Religious leaders and film actors wield great influence, and people listen to them," he added.

Tope also said that Maharashtra is leading in terms of the number of vaccine shots administered, but in some areas, the pace of vaccination is low.

Salman Khan, who has a massive fan following in the community, will help in promoting the importance of the vaccine and can influence people in getting their jabs.

Over 10.25 crore vaccine doses have been administered in the state so far, and by the end of November all eligible persons will have received at least the first dose, the minister said.

About the possibility of a third wave of the viral infection, the Public Health Minister said as per the experts, the pandemic has a seven-month cycle, but due to large-scale vaccination, the next wave would not be severe.

According to the health department, on Tuesday, Maharashtra registered a total of 886 Covid cases and 34 related fatalities. This took the tally in the state to 66,25,872 and the death toll to 140,636.

(With agency inputs)

Posted By: Mallika Mehzabeen