As India is set to start the vaccination program against COVID-19 on January 16, millions of doses of Covishield vaccine, manufactured by Pune's Serum Institute of India, have reached the length and breadth of the country. Himachal Pradesh has received 93,000 shots on Thursday evening as part of the first consignment which was dispatched from SII's Pune facility. The hilly state has more than 800 active cases of COVID-19. Kerala, which is struggling to keep rising cases under control also received the first batch of the vaccine in Mallapuram. The southern state has more than 65,000 active cases of coronavirus, the highest in the country. Ladakh also got 11,500 doses of the Covishield vaccine as part of the first phase of the vaccination program. BJP MP Jamyang Namgyal and state Health Department Director Dr Phuntsog Angchuk received the vaccine at Leh airport. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the vaccination program at 10:30 AM on January 16 with 3 crore health and frontline workers being listed to get the shots in the first phase.
Malappuram District received COVID-19 vaccines, ahead of pan-India vaccination drive. The first consignment of Covishield also arrived at Leh. So far, several states including Karnataka, New Delhi, Telangana, Bihar and Tamil Nadu have received the vaccine. First phase of COVID vaccination is scheduled to begin from Jan 16.
Covid-19 patients cast their votes during the second phase of Kerala local body polls. People placed under quarantine were also allowed to cast votes in their respective booths. These people arrived at polling stations donning PPE kits and taking other precautions. One hour after 6 pm was allotted to coronavirus patients for casting their votes. The second phase of local body polls in five central districts of Kerala held on Thursday. Second phase saw brisk participation of voters with around 76.28% turnout. Polling for 8,116 wards across Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Wayanad was held. Two corporations, 36 municipalities, 350 village panchayats, 58 block panchayats and five district panchayats went to polls. EC had deployed 63,187 officials at polling booths, 19,736 police personnel were on duty. Third phase in 4 districts - Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, Kasaragod - will be on December 14. Counting of votes will be held on December 16.
Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 02:08Published
Congress leaders from Kerala and Rahul Gandhi had a meeting on January 18 ahead of state Assembly elections in which they decided that no leader will be projected as a Chief Minister candidate in next polls. Speaking on the meeting, Kerala Congress president Mullappally Ramachandran said, "The upcoming Assembly election in Kerala was discussed during the meeting. We have taken a decision that we'll get united and go to the polls in a disciplined manner. Definitely, we will come out with flying colours. The question before us is how to win the elections. We are following the guidelines given by Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi."