Huge vaccine waste reported as India battles deadly COVID-19 wave

A huge number of vaccine doses have wasted in India even as several states were reporting vaccine shortages, blunting the country’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

More than 4.4 million doses were wasted, out of 100 million doses, from the start of the inoculation campaign in January through April 11.

This is according to data shared by the Ministry in response to a query filed under the Right to Information Act.

India, on Tuesday, registered its deadliest day since the pandemic began, with 1,761 deaths reported.

As several sites across India, including the main vaccination centre in Mumbai, ran out of vaccines, courts intervened and excoriated the authorities for bad planning.

“Hundreds of thousands of people could have vaccinated with doses that are wasted, helping control the second COVID wave that is sweeping the country,’’ the ministry said.

Vivek Pandey, a social activist, who filed the RTI told reporters, adding that the reply did not specify how the waste occurred.

“These drops that save lives, are being wasted. We are losing valuable and young lives.

“The pandemic does not discriminate,’’ the Delhi High Court said, according to a report in the Hindustan Times.

The information on vaccine wastages came to light a day after the government decided to widen the vaccination campaign to cover everyone above 18 years starting on May 1.

More than 259,000 infections were reported in the past 24 hours, taking India’s caseload to more than 15.3 million.

The country’s worst-hit areas have announced lockdowns, curfews and other restrictions as care systems have been stretched to the limit and graveyards and crematoria were overburdened. (dpa/NAN)

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