After Odisha, the Delhi government has now announced free COVID-19 vaccines for those above 18 years. The government has approved a purchase of 1.34 crore doses for the inoculation drive starting May 1, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Monday.
“The government will make efforts to speed up vaccine purchase and administering it to the people,” he said in an online briefing.
Kejriwal said COVID 19 vaccines should have one price and appealed to the Centre to bring down the price of the two vaccines that are currently being administered in the government’s vaccination drive.
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He also appealed to the vaccine manufacturers to bring down prices, saying it was time to help humanity and not to earn profit.
On Sunday, the Odisha government announced to vaccinate all in the age group of 18-25 free of cost.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said the free vaccines will cater to nearly 19.3 million residents, aged between 18 and 45 years and will cost the government ₹2,000 crore.
The Maharashtra government which similar announcement on Sunday, took a U-turn hours later, announcing that the Cabinet is yet to take a final decision in this regard.
“During our last cabinet meeting, we had decided that those between 18 and 45 years would be given free vaccine and only yesterday our deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said we would float global tenders for vaccines and inoculate all in the state. The process of procurement has started and would soon start the vaccination drive,” Maharashtra minority development minister Nawab Malik on Sunday.
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Malik said the state plans to vaccine 10 crore of its 12-crore population and would import 14 crore vaccines for now.