The Trinamool Congress on Saturday said the Centre should not go ahead with COVID-19 vaccination "on the basis of voters' list", but facilitate inoculation for every person in the country. TMC MP and Indian Medical Association (West Bengal chapter) president Santanu Sen said there are reports that the Centre is firming up guidelines to begin a vaccination drive based on voters' list of persons aged over 50 years.
"How can vaccination be done on the basis of voters' list? What about the citizens whose names may not figure in it, but who have other documents? Will they be left out," Sen told a press conference. He said the TMC demands that every bona fide resident of the country be extended the benefit of vaccines.
Sen alleged that while the West Bengal government spent Rs 5,000 crore to build COVID-19 medical care facilities, there was no significant financial help from the Centre, which "forcibly" sent teams to "find lacuna in our Covid fight and one of the teams, instead, praised our infrastructure at Beleghata ID Hospital." He also blamed the Narendra Modi government for "waking up late to the emerging Covid situation in February". "… The Union government did not have any prior planning in the first few months about the ways to cope with the situation, though the first coronavirus case was reported in the country on January 30," Sen said.
Despite all this, West Bengal has achieved remarkable success in the fight against the contagion, as the "declining death rate in past two months proves", he said. The death rate in the state will be 1.4 per cent in the coming days, the TMC leader said.
"The festive season didn't result in spike in COVID-19 cases. That speaks volumes about our battle yielding success," Sen asserted.