Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday (January 13) said that the COVID-19 vaccines would be available free of cost for all the residents of Delhi, even if the central government did not make it free for everyone in the country.
There was a confusion earlier that the free vaccination against COVID-19 will only be available for the frontline workers in Delhi.
The chief minister made the announcement three days before the COVID-19 vaccination drive is going to start in the country. The healthcare workers are the priority group for vaccination, followed by frontline workers.
"There are a lot of people who would not be able to afford the vaccine. I had appealed to the Centre to provide free vaccine to all the people of the country...If the Centre doesn't do it, the Delhi government will provide free vaccine to all the residents of Delhi," the chief minister said.
After the first dry run for COVID-19 vaccines in Delhi on January 2, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said that the vaccine would be provided free to all the residents in the capital city. Kejriwal on January 9 urged the Centre to consider making it free across India.
Kejriwal also urged people to stay alert against 'misinformation' about the COVID-19 vaccines.
"I want to appeal to everyone to not spread any misinformation on the vaccine. I believe that the Central government along with the scientists have followed all protocols and safeguards before bringing this vaccine. There should be no doubt regarding it," he said.
It is reported that about 2,64,000 doses of the Serum Institute of India's Covishield vaccine and 20,000 doses of the Bharat Biotech's Covaxin have reached Delhi for the COVID-19 vaccination drive.
The chief minister made his comments during his visit to the home of a doctor who died of COVID-19 while on duty in Delhi. The government provided a financial assistance of Rs 1 crore to Dr Hitesh Gupta's family. He used to work at the Karkardooma dispensary of the Delhi government.