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V-Day: Healthcare Workers Get First Jabs As India Rolls Out The World’s Largest Inoculation Programme Against COVID-19

Paving the way for the massive pan-India inoculation drive against COVID-19, the Drug Controller General of India had earlier this month approved Covishield, from the Oxford/AstraZeneca being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, and the indigenously developed Covaxin from Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use

V-Day: Healthcare Workers Get First Jabs As India Rolls Out The World's Largest Inoculation Programme Against COVID-19
  • PM Modi urged people to guard against complacency, follow COVID-19 measures
  • Our vaccination programme is driven by humanitarian concerns: PM Modi
  • Over three lakh healthcare workers will be inoculated on day one

New Delhi: Healthcare workers at the frontline of India’s COVID-19 battle got their first jabs on Saturday (January 16) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the world’s largest vaccination drive against the pandemic, showing the light at the end of a 10-month tunnel that upended millions of lives and livelihoods. More than one crore cases and 1.5 lakh fatalities later, India took its first steps out of the pandemic with shots of the Covishield and Covaxin vaccines being administered at medical centres across the country to a collective sigh of relief that this could finally be the beginning of the end of the COVID-19 trauma.

Also Read: Better To Take COVID-19 Vaccine Doses In A Gap Of 6-8 Weeks, Says Dr Suresh Jadhav Of Serum Institute of India

Along with healthcare workers, others such as AIIMS director Randeep Guleria, NITI Aayog member V K Paul, who is also head of an empowered group on medical equipment and management plan to tackle coronavirus outbreak, BJP MP Mahesh Sharma and West Bengal minister Nirmal Maji also received their first shot of the two-dose vaccine.

Addressing the nation ahead of the launch, the prime minister reminded people that two doses of the vaccine are very important and asked them to continue with masks and social distancing even after receiving the jabs.

Reassuring people that emergency use authorisation was given to the two ‘made in India’ vaccines only after scientists were convinced of their safety and effectiveness, he said the vaccines will ensure a decisive victory for the country over the coronavirus pandemic, he said.

“Dawaai bhi, kadaai bhi,” PM Modi said, asking people to guard against complacency and follow COVID-19 appropriate behaviour. Striking an emotional chord, PM Modi spoke of the disruption the pandemic had caused to people’s lives, isolating victims of the coronavirus and denying the dead traditional last rites. In a choked voice, the prime minister also referred to sacrifices made by healthcare and frontline workers, hundreds of whom lost their lives to the viral infection.

Our vaccination programme is driven by humanitarian concerns, those exposed to maximum risk will get priority, the prime minister said.

Injecting a note of confidence, he said it normally takes years to make a vaccine but in India two ‘Made in India’ vaccines were ready in a short span of time and work on other vaccines was also progressing at a fast pace. Paving the way for the massive pan-India inoculation drive, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) had earlier this month approved Covishield, from the Oxford/AstraZeneca stable and manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, and the indigenously developed Covaxin from Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use.

Also Read: Health And Frontline Workers Take The First Jab Of COVID-19 Vaccine, Feel ‘Safe And Proud’

Over three lakh healthcare workers will be inoculated on day one at 3,006 sites across all states and union territories. Around 100 beneficiaries will be vaccinated at each session site, officials said. The shots are first being offered to an estimated one crore healthcare workers, and around two crore frontline workers, and then to persons above 50 years of age, followed by persons younger than 50 years of age with associated comorbidities. Accordingly, sanitation worker Manish Kumar was the first person in the national capital to get a shot at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.

As Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan looked on, people around broke out in spontaneous applause. Mr. Vardhan said the two vaccines are a ‘sanjivani’, life infusing, in the fight against the pandemic.

We have won the battle against polio and now we have reached the decisive phase of winning the war against Covid. I want to congratulate all frontline workers on this day, Mr. Vardhan told reporters shortly after the first vaccine shots were administered.

Across the country, there was an almost festive air with many hospitals and medical centres decorated with flowers, balloons and buntings. Prayers were offered in several places.

“It’s a great day for humankind. I feel elated to get the first dose,” said Bipasha Seth, a doctor at a private hospital in the West Bengal capital Kolkata who received the first shot.

It’s a big day, said state Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim.

“We were in a state of depression for the last one year. From today, we will again relive our lives,” he said.

In Gujarat, the drive began at 161 centres in the state where the vaccine jabs were administered to health workers almost simultaneously.

Also Read: Coronavirus Explainer: What Are Adverse Events Post COVID-19 Immunisation

I am honoured that my name has been selected for first dose of vaccine at this centre in Rajkot. I didn’t have any apprehensions…, said Ashok bhai, who drives a medical van and was among the first recipients in the state.

“Nobody should have fear of side effects of this vaccine as it has passed through many trials and experts have certified it,” added former Medical Council of India (MCI) president Ketan Desai who got a jab at the civil hospital in Ahmedabad in the presence of Chief Minister Vijay Rupani. In the Maharashtra capital Mumbai, JJ Hospital Dean Dr Ranjit Mankeshwar was among the first in the state to get the shot.

The inoculation drive is taking place at 285 centres in Maharashtra. Ranganath Bhojje, a worker at the Goa Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), kicked off the vaccination drive in the coastal state. Union minister Prakash Javadekar and Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, who were present when Bhojje was given the dose, offered him a rose after it was done.

In Madhya Pradesh, where healthcare workers were welcomed with flowers at some centres and doctors performed a ‘puja’ at a temple in Gwalior, a sanitation worker was among the first beneficiaries. Tulsa Tandi, a 51-year-old sanitation worker was first in the queue in Chhattisgarh.

Tulsa Tandi, a Swacchtakarmi (sanitation worker) at the Dr B R Ambedkar Memorial Hospital Raipur since 2008, was the first person to get vaccinated in the state, state director for the National Health Mission Priyanka Shukla told PTI.

Tamil Nadu rolled out the COVID-19 vaccination drive at 166 sites across the state with a government doctor here becoming the first to be administered the shot. And in Telangana, a woman sanitation worker received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at a Hyderabad hospital to cheers and claps. Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy and Telangana Health Minister Eatala Rajender formally launchedthe vaccination programme at the state-run Gandhi Hospital. The drive to combat COVID-19 began in Kerala at 133 designated centres with prominent government doctors among the first batch of frontline workers to be administered the vaccine. State Health Minister K K Shailaja said 13,300 healthcare workers will be covered in a single day. The cost of vaccination of healthcare and frontline workers will be borne by the central government.

Also Read: COVID-19 Vaccination: Health Ministry Asks States And UTs To Identify Bottlenecks And Plan Corrective Actions

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene


Coronavirus has spread to 196 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 26,06,51,261 and 51,89,331 have died; 22,14,73,133 are active cases and 3,39,88,797 have recovered as on November 27, 2021 at 4:06 am.


3,45,63,749 8,318Cases
3,39,88,797 10,967Recovered
4,67,933 465Deaths
In India, there are 3,45,63,749 confirmed cases including 4,67,933 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,07,019 and 3,39,88,797 have recovered as on November 27, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths


12,153 699

64,80,061 665

1,40,891 34


51,24,618 4,677

50,109 2,343

50,35,384 6,632

39,125 388


29,94,963 402

6,640 119

29,50,130 277

38,193 6

Tamil Nadu

27,23,991 746

8,418 24

26,79,130 759

36,443 11

Andhra Pradesh

20,72,198 184

2,163 31

20,55,603 214

14,432 1

Uttar Pradesh

17,10,368 8

91 0

16,87,368 8


West Bengal

16,13,451 710

7,847 20

15,86,165 721

19,439 9


14,40,807 23

301 8

14,15,411 31



10,48,228 219

2,216 5

10,37,609 222

8,403 2


10,06,706 33

319 7

9,92,794 26



9,54,715 21

174 19

9,45,586 2



8,27,354 27

308 7

8,16,954 34


Madhya Pradesh

7,93,097 9

103 1

7,82,466 8



7,71,643 21

158 2

7,61,431 19



7,26,209 5

45 1

7,16,501 6



6,75,319 171

3,534 3

6,67,798 167

3,987 1


6,16,312 175

2,791 44

6,07,435 219



6,03,173 41

335 21

5,86,245 18

16,593 2


3,49,196 12

109 0

3,43,947 12



3,44,169 13

144 13

3,36,618 26


Jammu And Kashmir

3,36,237 174

1,719 13

3,30,048 157

4,470 4

Himachal Pradesh

2,26,859 102

827 8

2,22,190 107

3,842 3


1,78,799 34

266 11

1,75,152 22

3,381 1


1,33,921 359

4,227 111

1,29,206 469

488 1


1,28,825 31

321 3

1,26,632 28



1,25,098 28

674 13

1,22,456 39

1,968 2


84,771 10

80 4

83,871 6



84,394 16

335 4

82,591 20



65,438 8

48 7

64,570 1


Arunachal Pradesh

55,260 2

33 1

54,947 3



32,207 9

119 6

31,685 15



32,096 4

136 5

31,264 9



21,467 32

243 8

21,011 24


Dadra And Nagar Haveli


1 0




10,394 11

29 11



Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,678 1

3 0

7,546 1


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