It was on June 21 that India made a global record with highest single-day vaccinations as it administered over 86 lakh anti-coronavirus jabs in a day. A little over a week later, the vaccination rate of the country has dropped by 68 percent with India administering just 27.6 lakh jabs on Wednesday, as per the Union Health Ministry data.
Further, on June 27, the number was lowest in the last 15 days when only 17.21 lakh doses were given – a drop of 80 percent from June 21 numbers, the Ministry data analysed by CNN-News18 shows. India’s Covid-19 vaccination coverage on Thursday morning stood at 33.57 crore, the Union Health Ministry said.
New centralised free vaccination policy against coronavirus in India started from June 21. Under this, all above 18 years of age are being provided free jabs. The Union government is now procuring 75 percent of vaccines and giving them to states for free distribution. The Centre took the charge as the previous policy of letting states buy a portion of their requirements directly from companies was drastically impacting the vaccination drive.
The impact of the new policy was visible for several days. India was vaccinating more than 50 lakh people each day till June 26. Between June 23 and 26, over 60 lakh people were vaccinated each day.
However, this week, barring Monday, the vaccination rate was similar to pre-June 21 days. On Monday, 52.76 lakh people were vaccinated, while on Tuesday, 36.51 lakh people were given the jabs. This further dropped to 27.6 lakh on Wednesday. The vaccination drive completed 166 days on Wednesday.
Between June 15 and 20, the per day vaccination ranged from 28 lakh (on June 15) to 38.1 lakh (on June 19).
In terms of average per day vaccination, India has vaccinated 20.22 lakh people each day between January 16 — the beginning of the vaccination drive — and June 30.
Among all the months, the average per day vaccination rate of India was highest in June – 39.85 lakh – nearly double of the average of the entire drive (20.22 lakh) and also May (19.72 lakh). April recorded nearly 30 lakh vaccinations each day on an average. For March, this number was 16.39 lakh.
The per day average vaccination for January (2.35 lakh) and February (3.76 lakh) was lower as only small priority groups were being vaccinated.
The nationwide Covid-19 vaccination drive started on January 16 in India. In the first phase, health workers and other essential frontline workers were covered. In phase 2, started from March 1, all senior citizens aged more than 60 years and those in the age group of 45-59 years with co-morbidities were eligible for vaccination. From April 1, those above 45 years were eligible.
From May 1, the Centre started the liberalised and accelerated Phase 3 Strategy of Covid-19 vaccination, under which everyone above the age of 18 was eligible to get vaccine against Covid-19. Under this, states were empowered to procure additional vaccine doses directly from the manufacturers.
While the Union Health Ministry said the vaccination drive has been ramped up through availability of more vaccines, several states are telling a different story.
On Wednesday, the West Bengal government announced that it will cut down on administering the first dose of Covid-19 vaccines due to acute shortage. Further, under the Kolkata Municipal Corporation, first dose will not be given for the next two days.
On Monday, Odisha too flagged vaccine shortage in the state and requested the Centre for urgent supply of additional doses to manage vaccination sessions.
Meanwhile, the vaccination drive was also impacted in Gujarat’s Surat, Vadodara and Rajkot.
In Uttar Pradesh’s Noida and Ghaziabad, vaccination sessions were suspended at several centres as the two cities have been battling shortage of vaccines for the past three days.
Maharashtra: BMC says COVID vaccination will take place only for 3 hours (2pm-5pm) at a limited number of its centres in Mumbai todayCovaxin will be given only for second dose & Covishield to only people above 45 years of age, it says.
— ANI (@ANI) July 2, 2021
As per the Union Health Ministry data, so far, over 32.92 crore vaccine doses have been provided to the states/UTs. The states have consumed 31.67 crore doses, including wastages. More than 1.24 crore balance and unutilized Covid vaccine doses are still available with the states/UTs to be administered.
Furthermore, more than 94.66 lakh vaccine doses are in the pipeline and will be received by the States/UTs within the next three days, the Ministry said on Thursday.