Did MP slow down inoculation on preceding days to create record vaccination on June 21?

Express News Service
BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh, which set a national record of administering a maximum of 16,91,967 COVID vaccine doses in a single day on Monday, rendered just 692 total doses a day prior to it.

Even a day after the record-setting feat, just 4,759 total doses had been administered till 7.30 pm in the same state as per the COWIN India portal.

Not only did the central Indian state administer just 692 doses on June 20, but the total doses administered on June 18 and 19 too were also much lower. The state had administered 22,006 doses on June 19 and just 14,862 doses on June 18. This after the state had administered 1,24,226 total doses on June 17 and 3,38,847 doses on June 16.

If the COWIN data since June 1 was analysed, then the lowest total administered doses (692 doses) were reported on June 20, a day before the June 21 Maha Abhiyan (mega campaign) which targeted at administering 10 lakh jabs on a single day, but ended up with around 7 lakh more jabs.

“Our CM had targeted administering 10 lakh doses on June 21, but the enormous public response actually resulted in 16.95 lakh plus doses,” said MP medical education minister Vishvas Sarang.

Importantly, a total of 21,29,400 doses were allocated for Monday’s mega campaign, which saw 16.95 lakh doses being administered to people at 14,500 government and private medical facilities totally free.

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“No vaccines were hoarded, neither was vaccination slowed down prior to June 21 mega campaign. Always remember that COVID vaccination in MP happens at government centers on four days a week (Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday), so the vaccination might have been low on those days,” the minister claimed.

Importantly, the lowest 692 total doses were administered on June 20 which was Sunday, while the other low number of 14,862 doses were administered on June 18, which was Friday. On both these days vaccination is done only at private medical facilities.

However, when the June 20 numbers were compared with previous Sundays of this month, the number of total doses was much higher on previous Sundays, (43,783 on June 13 and 1,22,643 on June 6).

Even the Friday numbers revealed a similar trend, as the total doses administered on June 18 were the lowest among the doses administered on each of the three Fridays of June. When compared to just 14,862 doses on June 18, the total doses administered on the previous Friday (June 11) stood at 22,453, while the numbers were multiple times higher on the first Friday of the month (June 4) at 3,57,274 doses.

According to informed sources, the numbers on June 20 were not only lowest due to Sunday, but also due to preparations for the mega campaign carried out the next day on June 21 at 14,500 facilities.

The CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan, while praising the success of the mega campaign on Monday, had said that 5 lakh additional doses were allocated to MP for it, while the state is hopeful of getting 50 lakh doses by month-end for the second mega campaign planned for July 1-July 3.