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‘I was wrong, I stand corrected’ : Chidambaram admits ‘LIES’ circulated over vaccine acquisition

New Delhi: On Monday,ex-Union Minister and Congress chief P Chidambaram had criticized PM Modi over his assertion that the Centre permitted states to obtain vaccines. Though, Chidambaram later supported down after a letter by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee shared online. After receiving a fact check and arriving across West Bengal CM’s letter of demand, Chidambaram confessed that he stands rectified. He tweeted, “I told ANI ‘please tell us which state government demanded that it should be allowed to directly procure vaccines’. Social media activists have posted a copy of the letter of CM, West Bengal to PM making such a request. I was wrong. I stand corrected.”

While his Monday evening speech, Prime Minister Modi aimed out the varying position of various state governments in terms of COVID-19 vaccine when it comes to acquisition and management. He added that many states urged the Centre to obey a decentralized system for the vaccination. Though, he added that the states are presently taking a U-turn on the matter, thereby shifting their stand. Relating to the time between January 16 and May 1, Modi stated that the vaccination initiative was going on and being watched by the Centre. However, he said that states later began asking for decentralization amid vaccine drive. He also said that after the Centre later determined to modify the vaccination process and let states move it forward.

While Chidambaram in his Tweet stated that the ‘social media activists’ notified him about West Bengal’s demand, he conveniently omitted a related demand initiated by his party. Netizens flooded the remarks section with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s letter too, though, Chidambaram decided to not highlight the same.
Rahul Gandhi in a letter to Prime Minister Modi dated 8th of April, 2021, had directed that state governments have a greater demand in Covid-19 vaccine procurement. Rahul Gandhi stated in the letter, “Centralization and individualized propaganda are counter-productive. Even though Public Health is a state subject, our states have been bypassed right from vaccine procurement to registration.” Consequently, he demanded, “Give State governments a greater say in vaccine procurement and distribution.”

Moreover, he mentioned that the states again backtracked and began admitting that the prior system was more reliable. In a significant vaccination declaration, PM Modi announced a 100 percent centralized vaccination approach that will be executed within two weeks. Additionally, he declared that the decentralized system which launched on May 1 will be discarded. He added that the Centre will consider the obtainment of 75% of COVID-19 vaccines from the producers and provide these free to the States for vaccination. The remaining 25% would be available for private players, with an increase in the service charge.


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