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India Crosses 75-Crore Vaccine Milestone; WHO Hails Feat, Says 'Unprecedented Pace'

India's vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16.  (Image: Reuters/File)
India's vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16. (Image: Reuters/File)

So far, all adults in six states and union territories -- Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Ladakh and Lakshadweep -- have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

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News Desk| News18.com
New Delhi // Updated: September 13, 2021, 20:58 IST

India has crossed a landmark in its coronavirus vaccination drive by administering 75 crore doses, said union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Monday. In a tweet, Mandaviya invoked the 75th year of India’s independence by linking it to 75 crore doses administered. He said India’s vaccination drive continued to create new dimensions under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership.

Tweeting in Hindi, Mandaviya said, “Congratulations India! In the 75th year of independence, the country has crossed the figure of 75 crore vaccinations." He used the hashtags #SabkoVaccineMuftVaccine and #AazadiKaAmritMahotsav.

According to the health ministry, India administered 53,38,945 vaccine doses in the last 24 hours. This vaccination coverage has been achieved through 75,64,949 sessions. The ministry also said the Centre was committed to accelerating the pace and expanding the scope of Covid-19 vaccination, according to a report in ANI.

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Reacting to the development, World Health Organisation’s (WHO) South-East Asia regional director Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh congratulated India for the feat.

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So far, all adults in six states and union territories — Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Ladakh and Lakshadweep — have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Mandaviya said India took 85 days to touch the 10-crore vaccination mark, 45 more to cross the 20-crore mark and 29 to reach 30 crore. He added that it took only 13 days to reach 70 crore from 60 crore on September 7.

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The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16. The country launched vaccination for all people aged above 45 from April 1. The government then decided to expand the vaccination drive by allowing everyone above 18 to be vaccinated from May 1.

The vaccination exercise as a tool to protect the most vulnerable population groups in the country from COVID-19 continues to be regularly reviewed and monitored at the highest level, the ministry said.

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According to experts, to stop a third wave of the pandemic, India has to fully vaccinate (with both doses) 60 per cent of its population by the end of the year to stop a third wave. For that to be achieved, the vaccination rate should be 12 million doses per day. But at this rate, only 43 per cent will be vaccinated by December. The target was to vaccinate the entire adult population by December 31.

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On August 27, India achieved the milestone of administering over 1 crore Covid vaccine doses. The country has around 94 crore adults and needs 188 crore doses to fully vaccinate them as the three Covid vaccines being administered in India – Covishield by the Serum Institute of India, Covaxin by Bharat Biotech and Russian vaccine Sputnik V – are two shot vaccines.

(With PTI inputs)

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first published: September 13, 2021, 19:44 IST