Today in his address to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the change in vaccination policy. Although the central government will now procure vaccines for states, centralizing vaccine policy will take effect from June 21.
The central government will now procure 75 % of the vaccine and will give it to the state for vaccination. The rest, 25% of the vaccine, will be given to private hospitals for those who want to get vaccinate there, PM Modi said.
The private hospitals can only charge a max of Rs 150 as a service fee. The state government will now monitor the vaccination at private hospitals, said P.M.
From June 21 state will be provided with free vaccines to continue the vaccination drive, and every person above the age of 18 will get free vaccines.
PM Modi said, “While Corona cases started declining, different suggestions and demands were made to the Centre. It was asked why the Government of India was deciding everything. Why are the state governments not being given liberty? It was said ‘one size does not fit all’ demanding a change in vaccination policy.”
“We examined the requests of the State Government and to not inconvenience the citizens of the country. Therefore, we have decided that Union Government will continue the 25% of the work which State Government executed regarding Vaccines“, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said.
The central government decision came after the three-judge bench of the Supreme Court raised concerns on the central government vaccine policy. Supreme Court asked questions such as why dual pricing? Why no free vaccines for the 18-45 age group?
Supreme Court further asked the government to furnish documents of vaccine purchase history. Court Also asked how 35,000 crores allocated for vaccine procurement is utilized.
Narendra Modi, in his address, alleged states and said on demands of the state, the central government decentralized vaccine policy. Although, state’s we’re also given liberty to choose beneficiaries, the opening up of vaccination for all group led to a shortage of vaccines.
PM said the demands for decentralized procurement and distribution led to vaccination chaos, for which the central government was blamed.
On January 16, the central government announced the vaccination policy for the country. Initially, the central government adopted a centralized policy. However, on May 1 central government decentralized the vaccine policy in which states were allowed to procure vaccines from manufacturers.