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Eligible population in Karnataka to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by 2021 end: Minister

The Karnataka government has set a goal to vaccinate all those eligible in the state by November end, against coronavirus.

“Our major objective is to vaccinate all by October end or November end.

All our efforts are in the direction of vaccinating every citizen by the end of the year,” Health Minister K Sudhakar said on Wednesday.

He was speaking to reporters to announce the receipt of two lakh doses of Covishield from Pune-based Serum Institute of India.

Sudhakar said the accomplishment of vaccination drive by the year-end will include first and second doses to all.

Besides, the emphasis is on Covaxin produced by Bharat Biotech, which is setting up its manufacturing unit in Malur in Kolar, which will have a manufacturing capacity of four to five crore vaccines by August end.

He also said the Sputnik vaccine production may take place in Karnataka.

“The production of two vaccines in the state has instilled hope in us of achieving the goal of vaccinating all before any other state in the country.”

On the order for Covishield doses, Sudhakar said, “We have placed an order for two crore Covishield vaccines to the Pune-based Serum Institute of India. Today, we have received two lakh doses.”

According to Sudhakar, the doses will be administered to those who are above 45 years and are due for second dose.

The minister said the state has received 1.11 crore doses from the central government.

The state has received 10.94 lakh doses as part of direct procurement from manufacturers comprising 9,50,000 Covishield and 1,44,000 Covaxin.

“In all, we have got 1,22,20,510 vaccines, which is a combination of both Covishield and Covaxin. We have vaccinated 1,13,61,234 people so far in the state,” the minister noted.

To a question, he said 58,395 people recovered in the state on Tuesday, which is an encouraging trend.

“So far, 16.74 lakh people have recovered. That’s why we should not focus only on the number of infections and fatalities, which creates panic among people,” Sudhakar said.

He attributed the rising number of recovered patients and decreasing infections to lockdown-like restrictions and the COVID-appropriate behaviour of people.

The health minister said the next target of the state government is to reduce the fatalities by timely detection of infections and right treatment.

Regarding the black fungus disease, the minister said the Centre has given 1,050 vials of Amphotericin B, and more vials would come next week.

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