Amid the growing novel coronavirus cases in the state, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot on Monday urged the Centre to remove the age cap for COVID-19 vaccination. While only healthcare and frontline workers were vaccinated at government facilities in the initial phase, the inoculation drive was expanded to include people above 60 years of age and those aged above 45 years having comorbidities in the second phase. From April 1 onwards, all persons above the age of 45 can get inoculated.
Gehlot stressed the need for an all-out attack on the novel coronavirus by testing, tracking, treatment, and vaccination. Moreover, he called for other vaccines apart from COVISHIELD and COVAXIN to be allowed in India so that more people can be inoculated at the earliest. At present, there are 12,878 novel coronavirus cases in Rajasthan while 3,23,618 patients have been discharged and 2829 deaths have been reported.
Corona has increased rapidly. To stop this, everyone should be vaccinated. I appeal to the Hon'ble Prime Minister and the Central Government to allow the vaccination for all by removing the age bar.— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) April 5, 2021
From Monday onwards, a night curfew has been imposed in the state from 8 pm to 6 am besides the closure of multiplexes, swimming pools and gyms. While dining at restaurants and hotels in this period is prohibited, home delivery of food has been allowed. Travellers from outside Rajasthan shall have to produce a negative RT-PCR test report which is not older than 72 hours while entering the state. Additionally, people have been advised not to undertake inter-state travel and the state government will carry out a special drive to ensure the wearing of face masks and social distancing.
On January 3, the Drugs Controller General of India accepted the recommendations of the Subject Expert Committee of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation, paving way for the approval of COVISHIELD and COVAXIN. Manufactured by the Serum Institute of India with technology transfer from Oxford University-AstraZeneca, COVISHIELD is a Recombinant Chimpanzee Adenovirus vector vaccine with its overall efficacy of 70.42 per cent. On the other hand, COVAXIN is a Whole Virion Inactivated Corona Virus Vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with ICMR and NIV.
On January 16, PM Modi launched the pan-India rollout of the novel coronavirus vaccination drive via video conferencing. Marking the commencement of the second phase of the inoculation drive on March 1, the PM was administered the first dose of COVAXIN by Puducherry nurse V Niveda while nurse Rosamma Anil hailing from Kerala was present on this occasion. So far, 6,88,77,484 beneficiaries have been inoculated out of which 97,58,346 have been administered the second dose of the vaccine too.