NEW DELHI, Jun 27
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday urged the country to shed vaccine hesitancy and get themselves inoculated soon, and to trust science and scientists to combat the ‘threat of the COVID-19 which still remains among us.’
He spoke to some residents of Dulariya village, a tribal area in Betul district of Madhya Pradesh, during his monthly radio broadcast Mann ki Baat (straight from the heart), after they shared their fear of getting vaccinated after some rumours of its ill effects spread in their village.
“More than 31 crore Indians have taken the vaccine. I have taken both doses. My mother, who is nearly 100 years old, has also taken it. Trust science, not rumours and trust our scientists who have worked day and night to develop these vaccines which, along with masking and social distancing are our only armour against this shape-shifting disease,” he said.
Prime Minister Modi also hailed the fact that over 86 lakh vaccine doses were administered on a single day on June 21 at the start of the new phase of inoculation under which all adults are being given free jabs by the Union Government.
He also paid tributes to Guru Prasad Mohapatra, Secretary in his Government who died due to Covid recently, saying the officer worked overtime to make arrangements to ramp up oxygen production and supply during the recent wave even as he was battling the disease himself.
“Corona has snatched him away from us. There are countless people who have never been discussed. Our tribute to every such person would be that we follow the Covid protocol fully, get our vaccinations done,” Mr Modi said, noting that Doctors Day fell on July 1, a community that continues to be at the vanguard of the fight against the pandemic.
In his broadcast, he also paid tributes and remembered the contribution of Indian sprint legend Milkha Singh, who died earlier this month. Mr Modi hailed Singh’s contribution to Indian sports and said he will always cherish his interactions with the athlete. Singh died in a Chandigarh hospital after a month-long battle with COVID-19.
He also shared the struggles and triumphs of Olympics-bound Indian athletes and said people must not build any pressure on these sportspersons but “cheer for India.”
He said Guruprasad from Chennai had written to him appreciating his respectful references to Tamil Nadu and its language and culture and the frequent citing of Thiruvalluvar’s Thirukkural. “He says he has compiled all these references in an e-book and would like it uploaded on the Namo App [Prime Minister Modi’s personal app]. I have assured him I will do so,” he said. The Hindu