Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday in his address to the nation said that from June 21, the Centre will provide free vaccines to the states for all citizens above the age of 18 years.
“The Government of India itself will buy 75% of the total vaccine production from vaccine manufacturers and give it free to the state governments,” PM Modi announced.
The Prime Minister hit out at opposition states for indulging in ‘vaccine politics’. “In the midst of decreasing coronavirus cases in the country, different suggestions started coming before the central government, different demands started being made,” Modi said, referring to demands of decentralisation by various state governments.
The PM said that there was opposition to the Centre deciding the age limit for vaccination, as well.
“Starting from January 16 this year till the end of April, India’s vaccination program ran mainly under the supervision of the central government. The country was moving ahead on the path of providing free vaccine to all. The citizens of the country, following discipline, were getting the vaccine when it was their turn,” PM Modi said.
“However, from now on, it has been decided that the Government of India will also bear the responsibility of 25% of the work related to vaccination with the states. This arrangement will be implemented in the coming 2 weeks,” PM Modi added.
The Prime Minister said that in these two weeks, the central and state governments will together make necessary preparations according to the new guidelines.
Modi also announced that the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana had been extended till Diwali to ensure free ration to 80 crore people amid the pandemic.