“We are fighting another war against COVID-19,” said Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the nation on Tuesday. This comes amid the sharp surge in COVID-19 cases and the second wave of the pandemic being witnessed across the country.
Modi started his address by expressing his sympathies to the people who have lost a dear one to COVID-19 while acknowledging that the country is facing a second wave of COVID-19 now.
We have to save the country from another lockdown: PM Modi
Vaccines will be available for free in government hospitals. This will help the poor. Our effort is to keep the disruption to a minimum, both social and fianacial. Vaccines will be made available at a fast pace in urban areas: PM Modi
I urge migrant labourers to remain where they are...it will be easier for them to get the vaccines in cities. It will help them to continue with their work: PM Modi
You have all fought COVID-19. I am sure that jan bhagidari will help us fight COVID-19 again. There are many who are helping people, whether it be food, meds or shelter. I thank these people for their efforts. I urge all to come forward and help those in need. I urge the youth to help in ensuring that COVID norms are followed: PM Modi
"We did not have a COVID specific medical infrastructure last year...but now we have all of that in a short period of time. We are constantly increasing testing," he says.
We should not lose hope or be afraid...we have to take the right call at the right time...this is how we will win this battle," says PM Modi
Work is on to increase the number of beds in hospitals. In some cities, large COVID19 dedicated hospitals are being built: PM Modi
"Our challenges are big...but we have to overcome them," says PM Modi.
"We are fighting another war against COVID-19. Things were better over the last few weeks but now we are experiencing the second wave," says PM Modi.
"I can understand your problems and suffering, especially of those who have lost their loved ones," he says.
Earlier, PM Modi interacted with vaccine manufacturers from across the country via video conferencing on Tuesday wherein he applauded them for their achievements and professionalism. He said the biggest strengths of our vaccine industry are its ‘Samarthya, Sansadhan and Seva Bhaav’, and these are what makes them a vaccine leader in the world.
Stating that the government has now allowed the vaccination programme for every adult starting May 1, Modi urged the vaccine manufacturers to continuously scale up the production capacity to inoculate citizens in the shortest possible time. He also appreciated the efforts and studies being conducted by scientists in development of new vaccines.
He also credited them for developing and manufacturing vaccines in record time and at cheapest rates, adding the world’s largest vaccine programme is underway in India.
He said that throughout this process of developing and manufacturing vaccines, the country has constantly worked with the spirit of public-private-partnership under the ‘Mission Covid Suraksha’, and created an end-to-end vaccine development ecosystem. The government has ensured that all the vaccine manufacturers not only get all possible help and logistic support, but also the process of vaccine approval is speedy and scientific, Modi said. He also assured them of all possible support and smooth approval process for vaccine candidates that are currently under trial phase.
Further, he said the health infrastructure in the private sector has played a big role in the country’s fight against Covid-19 and in the coming days, it will play an even more active role in the vaccination drive. This will require better coordination between hospitals and industry.
The vaccine manufacturers thanked the Prime Minister for the government’s decision of allowing vaccination for everyone above the age of 18 and various steps taken to give more incentives and flexibility. They also appreciated the prime minister’s leadership for the support they have received from the Government of India throughout the process of vaccine development and production. They also discussed their plans to ramp up production, upcoming vaccine candidates and research on the new variants.
On Monday, the PM had held a meeting with doctors and pharma companies wherein the decision to open the vaccination process through the private sector for everyone above the age of 18 years from May 1 was taken.
(Text - News18, The Quint and other agencies)