As Delhi grapples with a shortage of coronavirus vaccines, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday said the makers of Sputnik V will supply anti-Covid jabs to the city but the quantity is yet to be decided.
He also said there were around 620 cases of black fungus or mucormycosis in Delhi, but Amphotericin-B injections used in its treatment are in short supply.
“Talks with the makers of Sputnik V are on. They will give us vaccines, but the quantity is yet to be decided. Our officials and the representatives of the manufacturers met on Tuesday, too,” the CM told reporters at the launch of Delhi’s first drive-through vaccination centre at Vegas Mall in Dwarka.
The Centre has asked states to procure vaccines from the international market, but no state government has been able to purchase even “one additional vaccine” so far, he said.
“All state governments have tried everything, they have (floated) global tenders and talked to all vaccine-manufacturers. All firms have declined to talk to us,” he said.
The Centre needs to demonstrate a sense of urgency and run the vaccination drive on a war-footing, he added.
He said it is the Central government’s responsibility to procure vaccines.
“Today, we are at war against Covid-19, wherein the Centre and states have their share of responsibilities. The Centre cannot shirk its responsibility and ask states to fend for themselves. It is wrong,” he said.
“It is something like Pakistan declaring a war on India and then they ask if Delhi has manufactured a nuclear bomb and Uttar Pradesh bought a tank…It is the Central government’s responsibility to procure and supply vaccines. Delhi can be held accountable if they (the Centre) give us vaccines and we do not open up centres,” a visibly angry Kejriwal said.
Asked if the Delhi government is going to lift the lockdown, he said, “A lockdown cannot be extended indefinitely. It has hit economic activity and businesses…we will decide how to go about reopening.” While extending the ongoing lockdown till May 31, Kejriwal had on Saturday said his government will start the unlock process from next week if Covid cases keep declining.
The CM also said that anti-Covid shots manufactured by Moderna and Pfizer are both suitable for children and the Central government should procure these vaccines in a large number to vaccinate them.
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First Published: Wed, May 26 2021. 13:51 IST
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