Representative image: Reuters
A total of 1.94 crore beneficiaries have been vaccinated for COVID-19 in India so far, according to the Union Health Ministry's provisional report.
On March 5, the 49th day of the immunisation drive, over 14.92 lakh beneficiaries were vaccinated, the ministry said. Of these, 11.99 lakh beneficiaries were given the first shot of the two-dose regime. About 2.92 lakh healthcare and frontline workers received the second dose, the ministry added.
The second dose of COVID-19 vaccination started for beneficiaries who have completed 28 days since receiving the first shot. The emergency use approval granted by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) accords a window of four to six weeks for the second dose to be administered.
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the nationwide vaccination drive on January 16 with healthcare workers at the frontline of India's COVID-19 battle getting their first jabs.
The country has begun the second phase of the vaccination drive in which everyone above 60 years of age and those over 45 years with comorbidities will be able to get the vaccine.
India’s drug regulator has approved two vaccines - Covaxin developed by Bharat Biotech and Covishield from the Oxford/AstraZeneca stable being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) - for emergency use in the country.
Here are all developments related to the COVID-19 vaccine in India:
> Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh took his first dose of an anti-coronavirus vaccine at the civil hospital in Mohali on March 5 and appealed to all those who are eligible to get inoculated. He was administered the vaccine by an auxiliary nurse and midwife Manpreet.
> Over 27,000 people, including 14,874 senior citizens, received COVID-19 vaccine shots in Delhi on the day, according to data shared by officials. In the 45-59 years age group, 2,020 beneficiaries received the jabs, a senior official said. Over 5,100 senior citizens in Delhi had received their first shots of the vaccine on the day when the second phase of the vaccination drive began in the national capital.
> Union minister Prakash Javadekar received the first shot of COVID-19 vaccine at a private hospital in Pune on the day.
> Biotechnology industry veteran Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw has slammed calls from some experts and politicians to provide COVID-19 vaccines at private hospitals for free, terming them irrational. The Executive Chairperson of biotech major Biocon Limited noted that people have a choice to pay or get a free vaccine.
> The Election Commission has sought a report from the West Bengal chief electoral officer on the Trinamool Congress' complaint that the picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the COVID-19 vaccination certificate violates the model code. A functionary said on Thursday that the state CEO has been directed to file a report to verify the veracity of the TMC's complaint.Here is the state-wise vaccination count:
|Uttar Pradesh|| 17,01,661|
|West Bengal|| 14,87,060|