Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday said that the state has only five days of COVID-19 vaccines left.
“Punjab left with only 5 days of supply (5.7 lakh Covid vaccine doses) at the current levels of vaccinating 85000-90000 persons a day. If the state is able to meet its target of 2 lakh vaccines a day, then its current supplies will last only 3 days,” the Punjab CM said during a video conference convened by Congress president Sonia Gandhi to discuss the Covid situation.
He said that he had written to the Prime Minister and the Union Health Minister to give confirmed supply schedules. He also urged the Centre to share the schedule for the supply of vaccines with the states over the next quarter based on their confirmed supply orders.
“Despite being a slow-starter in vaccination, Punjab has vaccinated more than 16 lakh persons, at an average of around 85000-90000 per day,” he said.
Captain Amarinder Singh said people in Punjab were still not coming out in large numbers for the vaccination due to the massive anger prevailing against the Government of India on the issue of Farm Laws. Since Punjab has a majority population among the agriculture community, even the common man is affected by the farmers’ agitation, he said, adding “this anger is impacting the vaccination drive.”
He said his government is undertaking an extensive media campaign to address the misinformation regarding COVID-19 and vaccination hesitancy.
“Ranking 18th in the country at present in terms of cases reported, Punjab is showing around 8 per cent positivity, with an average of around 3000 cases per day for the past 15 days,” the Chief Minister said.
The number of cases is slightly stable, he pointed out, adding that “this shows that the steps taken in the last 3 weeks are in the right direction.” Even in the graphs put up by Health Ministry in Prime Minister’s review meeting yesterday, the “curve appears to be flattened over the past fortnight,” he said, disclosing that the state currently has around 27,200 active cases with a recovery rate of 87.1 per cent.
The CM further said that the deaths are a concern for Punjab, with around 50-60 daily deaths with a little under 2 per cent Case Fatality Rate (CFR) in the second surge.
He also gave details of testing and contact tracing, revealing that more than 40,000 COVID tests are being conducted per day of which more than 90 per cent are RT-PCR, with Punjab’s testing per million is higher than the national average.
The meeting was attended by chief ministers of the Congress-ruled states, as well as senior party leaders, including Rahul Gandhi.