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No Vaccines, Forced to Use Stock Meant for 18+ For Those Above 45: Maharashtra Health Minister

File photo of Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope

File photo of Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope

The Union government should grant approval to all the COVID-19 vaccines available in the global market, Tope said.

Mumbai: Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Tuesday alleged that the Union government was not fulfilling its responsibility to provide adequate number of vaccine doses to states. “The Union government has not provided enough vials of Covaxin and Covishield, hence we had to divert our own Covaxin stock, purchased for the 18-44 years age group, for the above- 45 age group," Tope told reporters here.

“The Union government is not fulfilling its responsibility of providing sufficient quantity of vaccine," he added. The Union government should grant approval to all the COVID-19 vaccines available in the global market, Tope said.

“It is a reasonable and necessary thing to do now," the minister added. Further, the Centre should help the existing two vaccine-makers in the country — Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India — to enhance their production, Tope said.

The Maharashtra government has asked vaccination centres to use the vials provided for the 18-44 age group to inoculate the above 45 category, the minister said. “We are going slow on the vaccination of 18-44 age group," he said.

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first published:May 11, 2021, 23:11 IST