Arunachal Pradesh Health and Family Welfare Minister Alo Libang has said that the state government would try to make the Russian-made Sputnik vaccine available at private and government health centres of the state. 

Libang, who launched ‘Tika Utsav’, the state Covid-19 vaccination campaign at the Tomo Riba Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (TRIHMS) in Itanagar, said that six cases of highly contagious B.1.617.2 lineage of the SARS-CoV-2 virus have been detected in the state. 

“Therefore, people should be more cautious and follow all the safety precautions issued by the Health department,” he said. 

The minister said in the entire district, 36 places have been located where 100 vaccines per day are administered to people aged 18-44 years.  

The Itanagar Capital Region has received 300 vaccines so far on the first day of Tika Utsav, he added. 

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“We are also in the meantime trying to bring more vaccines and the department is in continuous touch with the Serum Institute of India (SII). The state government is even making an effort to procure the Sputnik vaccine,” Libang said. 

He said the health department has 50,000 Covid vaccines for the targeted age of 45 years and above. However, there are only 20,180 vaccines for people aged 18 years and above. 

The Tika Utsav will continue till May 30. 

Meanwhile, ICR district medical officer Mandeep Perme said that the vaccine doses can be availed at RKMH (Itanagar), TRIHMS and the old building office of the Art and Culture department in Naharlagun. He said that the vaccine doses will increase in the next day to 200 which will be provided in the same locations. 

He, however, said that there won’t be any spot registration for the dose that should be done through online mode. 

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At TawangLocal legislator Tsering Tashi launched the Tika Utsav at the vaccination centre of the Khandro Drowa Tsangmo district hospital here. 

Tawang deputy commissioner Sang Phuntsok, district medical officer Dr Wangdi Lama and other senior doctors and officers were present on the occasion. 

The MLA along with the DC later inspected the ongoing works in the inpatient department of the hospital. 

Interacting with the doctors and other officials, Tashi said that the entire Tawang district has been declared a containment zone and appealed to all those having symptoms related to Covid-19 to come forward for testing. 

“Early detection of the virus can save lives, and we have to prevent its further spread with combined efforts,” he said. 

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The MLA also appreciated the dedication and services being provided by the healthcare workers. 

At Bomdila: West Kameng deputy commissioner Karma Leki launched the Tika Utsav drive at the general hospital here. 

The DC urged all the eligible to come forward to vaccinate themselves also all follow the SOPs to keep oneself safe from the infection. 

Around 100 beneficiaries were given the first dose of Covishield vaccine on the day. 

At Pasighat: The Covid-19 vaccination drive for those above 18 years here was launched by local legislators Kaling Moyong and Ninong Ering in the presence of deputy commissioner Dr Kinny Singh and other officers. 

Speaking on the occasion, both Moyong and Ering both urged those eligible to avail the vaccination facility. 

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The MLAs also appreciated the efforts of chief minister Pema Khandu and assured full cooperation for successful administration of the vaccine in the state. 

They also appealed to the people to follow Covid-19 appropriate behaviour to combat the virus. 

Around 346 beneficiaries, including those above 45 years, were administered the first dose of Covishield vaccine on the day. 

DAMIEN LEPCHA

Damien Lepcha is Northeast Now Correspondent in Arunachal Pradesh. He can be reached at: lepcharaul@gmail.com