Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Wednesday said the state government intends to administer booster doses of the Covid-19 vaccine to frontline workers including health personnel. Bommai said he will meet Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya to discuss the same “in person” during his visit to Delhi tomorrow.
“Our health workers and frontline workers had taken first and second doses of vaccine about six to seven months back. Health experts here have felt that they need to be administered with a booster dose. I will meet the Union Health Minister in person to raise this concern,” Bommai said, speaking to reporters at Hubballi. A final decision on the same will be based on the Centre’s advice, the chief minister added.
On questions related to whether the Covid-19 variant confirmed to be “other than Delta” was ascertained, Bommai said that the sample of the person who arrived in Bengaluru recently from South Africa, was “sent to NCBS (National Centre for Biological Sciences) for further analysis.” He reiterated that all other international passengers, whose positive samples were sent for whole-genomic sequencing were identified to be of the Delta variant.
Bommai also reiterated that plans of lockdown were not on the cards, urging the public to avoid “unnecessary worry and panic related to such rumours.” He explained that social and economic activities were only gradually getting back on track and hence such a decision was not discussed at all, after several meetings with the experts.
“We are yet to make any decision on restrictions for Christmas and New Year celebrations. The situation then will be assessed before taking a call on those,” he said.
When asked whether Karnataka would attach any government facility or scheme with Covid-19 vaccination, similar to that announced by neighbouring Kerala on Tuesday, Bommai said the state’s focus was on “intensifying vaccination campaigns rather than making it compulsory.”