Minister Ashoka calls for wide publicity to vaccination campaign
Tejasvi Surya, Member of Parliament from Bengaluru South, and State Revenue Minister R Ashoka have set Health and BBMP officials a target of reaching 5 lakh vaccinations in the constituency in 15 days. Around 2.5 lakh citizens of the area, aged 45 and above, have already been vaccinated since March 1.
Leading a meeting of elected representatives from Bengaluru South with BBMP and private hospitals on Saturday, Surya directed officials to achieve maximum vaccinations from April 11-14, during the ‘Vaccine Utsav’ called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Ashoka instructed officials to increase awareness of the vaccination programme among the public via loudspeakers, autos and street-to-street campaigns. The other elected representatives present were Basavanagudi MLA Ravi Subramanya, Vijayanagar MLA M Krishnappa and Chickpet MLA Uday Garudachar.
“There are about 7.5 lakh voters (7,49,946) aged above 45 in the South zone, comprising the six constituencies of Basavanagudi, Jayanagar, Vijaynagar, Padmanabhnagar, Chickpet and BTM Layout,” Surya said, addressing the meeting. “We need to achieve the remaining target by vaccinating about 5.5 lakh people (2,44,510 already vaccinated) in the next 15 days. For this, we need to educate the economically weaker sections about the vaccination programme. I also notice that 80% of the vaccination is being done at private hospitals and there’s less vaccination happening in the Primary Health Centres. We need to create more awareness in slums, give wide publicity in these areas and organise several vaccination camps in such localities.”
There are 27 government and 89 private vaccination centres in the South zone. Assembly- wise, the highest number of people vaccinated so far are in Padmanabhnagar (57,500), followed by Chickpet (53,730), Jayanagar (44,050) and BTM Layout (43,220). 27,100 people have been vaccinated in Basavanagudi and 18,910 in Vijayanagar.
‘Double vaccine centres’
“Every day, about 35,000 people can get vaccinated in the South zone and we need to increase this capacity to 70,000 at least. Similarly, the number of vaccination centres will also have to be doubled,” Ashoka said.
Surya earlier spoke to Resident Welfare Associations (RWA) and kick-started preparations for vaccination drives in apartment complexes. “RWAs and apartment complexes should organise vaccination drives. I request all the MLAs in Bengaluru South to address apartment associations and collaborate with them to conduct vaccination drives,” Surya added.
BBMP officials have identified travel (34.1% cases in March in the South zone) as one of the main reasons for the increase in the number of Covid-19 infections. Surya requested the police to make the best use of the 2,000 additional Home Guards recruited by BBMP to ensure Covid-appropriate behaviour is followed throughout the city.
Cops told to curb crowds
Ashoka directed the police to curb large gatherings and also control the number of people gathering in marriage halls, fests, etc., during the oncoming festive period.
BBMP Chief Commissioner Gaurav Gupta, BBMP’s South zone coordinator Pankaj Kumar Pandey, BBMP’s Special Commissioner (Health) Rajendra Cholan and South zone Zonal Commissioner Thulasi Maddineni participated in the meeting.