An 84-year-old man in Bihar needed no persuasion to take his first shot of the COVID vaccine. Neither for the second, nor third, or fourth…
He was caught before he could take his 12th, yes twelfth, dose of the COVID vaccine.
Brahmadev Mandal, a retired postal department employee, has even kept a detailed record of his feat. Jabbed 11 times, he considers it a “wonderful thing” and appeals to everyone to get vaccinated.
Mandal, a resident of Orai village of Puraini police station under Udakishunganj sub-division of the state’s Madhepura district, said he took so many doses as the vaccine had beneficial effects on him. “I benefitted a lot from the vaccine. This is why I have been taking it repeatedly,” he explained, according to a report in India Today.
It may be hard to digest for those sighing over their sore and painful arm post-vaccination and the wave of chill and fatigue that is a frequent side-effect of the COVID vaccine.
According to Mandal, he took his first vaccine shot on February 13 last year. Between February 13 and December 30, he took 11 jabs at a Public Health Centre. He even jotted down the place, date and time when the shots were administered to him.
“The government has made a wonderful thing (the vaccine),” he said.
But Mandal’s feat begs the question – how did he manage to hoodwink the system so many times?
Madhepura district’s civil surgeon Amarendra Pratap Shahi has ordered an investigation to find out how the man managed to get vaccinated so many times, and has sought reports from officials of the health camps.
Mandal reportedly submitted his Aadhaar card and his phone number on eight occasions and used his voter ID card and his wife’s phone number on the other three.
According to the media report, the system can be cheated at offline camps. Health department officials were quoted as saying that a person’s Aadhaar card and phone number is collected at the camp and later fed into the database. But sometimes, the details are rejected if they are found to have been repeated. This may allow people to evade the system.
Mandal’s 11 vaccinations come at a time when vaccine hesitancy has got many health experts and administrators scratching their heads over how to persuade the populace to take a first or even second inoculation shot that will save them from death by COVID.