Trust science, not rumours : PMVaccination : The answer
Ramp up vaccination was the call then. Now it is more about convincing the people to shed their vaccine hesitancy and come out willingly to get their vaccine jab. It is in this context that Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baat radio broadcast on June 27 urged the people to ‘Trust science, not rumours.’ Get vaccinated has been the call of the Government for quite some time now and there is reason for this. Getting vaccinated may not offer 100 percent immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 but independent surveys conducted by different media houses have reported that those who have received the vaccine jabs were less likely to be on ventilators or on oxygen. Here is a case of the Prime Minister himself addressing the people directly to highlight the importance of getting vaccinated against the virus and here in Manipur too, the need for all to get vaccinated has never been felt as much as at the moment. The number of daily new infections continue to climb in triple digit and so too the death rate. The virus is out there and playing havoc with the lives of the people and getting vaccinated is obviously the only answer before the people and one is left wondering why so many are still reluctant to come out and get themselves inoculated. Till June 27, the number of eligible people who have received their vaccination shots was 5,31,004 and given that the vaccine shots were rolled out on January 16 this year, with the 18 and above years of age eligible to get the vaccine from May 1, the figure is not that encouraging. Obvious that there are no long queues in front of the vaccination centres for people to get their vaccine shots and the Government would obviously need to do more to convince the people to come out and get themselves vaccinated. If the Prime Minister himself deemed it fit to address the Nation and get in touch with the people to get the vaccine shot, then maybe the political leadership here at Imphal may also think of ways to reach out to the people to highlight the importance of getting the vaccine jabs.
This is where the Government would do well to reach out to the civil society organisations and get them actively involved in convincing the people to come out for vaccinations. The Government will also need to reach out to all the sixty MLAs, former members of the District Councils and Municipal Councils and Corporation, in the case of Imphal, and utilise their co-operation and help in spreading the message of the importance of getting vaccinated. Let it be very clear to all. The absolute daily number of new infections will continue to see ups and downs but a look at the daily positivity rate should more than convince everyone that it has always been above the 6 percent mark. The lowest that Manipur has recorded in June so far is the 6.96 percent in positivity rate on June 12. On other days the positivity rate has always been above the 7 percent mark and this is a cause for concern. Remember too that restrictions have been in place since April 29 this year and even after nearly two months the positivity rate has been consistently above the 7 percent mark. Clearly something, somewhere is missing. Given the restrictions or containment zone or lockdown tag, Manipur should have seen a decline in the number of daily fresh infections, but this is not the case. Or is it a case of there being too many asymptomatic people, who were then undetected but coming out only now in the face of the random, mass testing conducted ?