Oppn leaders urge Centre to launch free mass vaccination drive


New Delhi: Leaders from 13 Opposition parties have urged the Centre to go in for free mass vaccination drive in view of unprecedented surge in coronavirus cases.

They called upon the Union Government to ensure seamless oxygen supply to all hospitals and health centres across the country to contain the explosive coronavirus situation.

The signatories include Congress president Sonia Gandhi, JDS leader and former prime minister HD Deve Gowda, NCP leader Sharad Pawar, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee.

The joint statement urged the Centre to focus attention in ensuring the flow of oxygen supplies to all hospitals and health centres across the country.

The opposition leaders said the budgetary allocation of Rs 35,000 crore for the vaccination programme must be utilised for this drive. JMM leader and Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, DMK chief MK Stalin, BSP supremo Mayawati, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav have also signed the statement, besides left leaders D Raja (CPI) and Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M).

The Congress leader Jairam Ramesh hoped that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would consider the joint statement seriously.


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