12:06 GMT30 July 2021
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    The Indian Government has dismissed allegations of a COVID-19 vaccine shortage and stated that if there is any issue in any state, they need to come up with a better plan for their inoculation drives. According to federal Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan, the speed of vaccination has increased in the country.

    Indian Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan on Friday criticised Rahul Gandhi, a key opposition leader from the Congress party, for his "Where are vaccines?" remarks.

    An hour after Gandhi's tweet, the federal Health Minister took to the microblogging platform, saying there is "no vaccine for the virus of arrogance and ignorance".

    ​Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Tweeted in Hindi on Friday saying: "It's July but there is no vaccine."

    ​This spat comes at a time when several Indian states have again started complaining of a shortage of COVID-19 vaccines. Meanwhile, Dr. Vardhan said that the states had been informed in advance of their future vaccine supplies.

    According to media reports, the West Bengal state government, after complaining about a scarcity of COVID-19 vaccines, has decided to utilise 50 percent of its future supply for the second dose. Other states that have raised complaints of vaccine shortages include Delhi, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu.

    On Wednesday, flash protests took place in Chennai, capital city of Tamil Nadu state, over a shortage of vaccines. Moreover, Odisha state had also shut down its vaccination centres, citing a depletion of stocks.

    On Thursday, the Indian government informed that more than 32 million vaccine doses have been provided to States and Union Territories (UTs) so far, through the Government of India (free of cost channel) and the direct state procurement category.

    Out of this, the total consumption, including wastage, is reported to be over 316 million (316,750,891) doses. More than 12 million (12,450,909) balance and unutilised COVID-19 vaccine doses are still available with the States/UTs to be administered. More than 9 million (9,466,420) vaccine doses are being delivered and will be received by the States/UTs within the next three days, according to the data revealed by the Indian Government.

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    India, COVID-19, coronavirus, Rahul Gandhi
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