PM tells CMs amid COVID spike: Don’t panic, gear up for more variants

A 'pre-emptive, pro-active and collective' approach is what the PM underlined at the meeting.

The PM emphasised on the need to accelerate the ‘Har Ghar Dastak’ programme to reach 100 per cent vaccination coverage.

PM Narendra Modi on Thursday advised the chief ministers of states to take heart in the fight against COVID and not panic amid the skyrocketing infections.

Whatever variant it may be, the way to fight it is vaccination, he said at his first meeting on the pandemic this year with the CMs on Thursday evening, when India recorded over 2.47 lakh fresh infections.

A “pre-emptive, pro-active and collective” approach is what the PM underlined at the meeting. “We have to stay alert but we also need to be aware that there’s no need to panic. We have to be careful amid this festive season,” Modi warned.

“It is very important to safeguard the economy and livelihoods of common people while framing COVID strategies. The focus must be on local containment,” the PM explained, adding that the way forward included extensive vaccination.

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“People may also try India’s age-old wisdom of drinking kadha. It is not a medicine, but a tried-and-tested tradition of India,” he advised, further suggesting that maximum people should get treated in home isolation.

Also read: Is increased hospitalisation due to Omicron? Centre has a way to know

Talking about Omicron, the variant which is driving the current surge, Modi said that in the initial days of the outbreak, there was some doubt regarding the new variant. “But now the situation is clear and countries like the US are reporting 14 lakh cases in a day because of Omicron,” he said.

“Our preparation should be ahead of all variants of COVID. After we tide over Omicron, we have to make preparation in place to fight other variants of the virus as well. And in this, states will cooperate with each other,” the PM added.

Modi also addressed the issue of vaccination, saying that “there are many narratives like why vaccination is not stopping reinfection but people should not pay heed to all these as vaccination is the only sure-shot way to come out of the pandemic. It is India’s pride that India’s vaccines against COVID have been globally acknowledged and India has achieved landmark vaccination figures even before the vaccination drive completes a year”.

He emphasised on the need to accelerate the ‘Har Ghar Dastak’ programme to reach 100 per cent vaccination coverage.

“This is the third year of India’s fight against the pandemic. India’s victory is certain,” the PM said in his closing remarks.

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