India crosses 1 billion COVID-19 vaccination, Govt gears up for celebration, Health News, ET HealthWorld


REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas
REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas

India crossed the 1 billion COVID-19 vaccination milestone, today, including first and second doses. More than 103.5 crore vaccine doses provided to States/UTs with more than 10.85 crore balance and unutilized vaccine doses still available with States/UTs, the Union Health Ministry informed.

According to the Ministry’s daily COVID update, India’s active COVID-19 caseload stands at 1,78,831. The Active cases account for less than 1% of total cases, currently at 0.52%. This has been the lowest since March 2020.

There have been 17,561 recoveries in the last 24 hours increasing the total Covid-19 recoveries to 3,34,95,808.

Following this, the government has planned massive celebrations across the country to mark the milestone. As Union Health Minister, Manshukh Mandaviya will launch a song by singer Kailash Kher and an audio-visual film at the Red Fort.

Announcements will be made on airplanes, ships, metros and at railway stations when India achieves its target of administering 100 crore doses. Celebrations will also be held at central government hospitals in the city to mark the occasion.

Villages which have completed 100 percent vaccination can put up posters and banners complimenting health workers for their role in the exercise. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is planning to illuminate 100 heritage monuments across the country in tricolour. Hooting of ships anchored on Indian ports, will mark the occasion.

The largest khadi tricolour in the country, weighing around 1,400 kg, will be displayed at the Red Fort on Thursday. The same tricolour with dimensions 225 feet by 150 feet was unfurled on 2 October Gandhi Jayanti in Leh.

“After 100 crore doses are administered, we will go in mission mode to ensure that those who have taken their first dose take their second dose too to ensure they are protected against COVID-19 ,” Mandaviya had earlier informed and urged all those who are eligible to get inoculated without delay and contribute to the historic vaccination journey of India.

Only one other country has administered over a billion vaccine doses – China (crossed 1 billion doses in June), which is also the only other country to have a population of more than one billion.

The nationwide vaccination drive started in India on 6 January with the healthcare workers (HCWs) and the frontline workers getting inoculated in the first phase. The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination commenced from 1 March for people over 60 years of age and those aged 45 and above with specified comorbid conditions. The country launched vaccination for all people aged more than 45 years from 1 April. The government then decided to expand its vaccination drive by allowing everyone above 18 to be vaccinated from 1 May.

With input from agencies