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Karnataka government goes back on decision to treat airport staff as ‘frontline workers’ for Covid-19 vaccination

The development came days after Bangalore International Airport Limited Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer Hari K Marar wrote to the Health Department on January 20, urging authorities to administer vaccine to those working at airports.

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru |
Updated: January 25, 2021 8:18:26 am
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A day after the Karnataka government decided to vaccinate staff at all airports in the state on a priority basis, the government withdrew the order on Sunday.

According to a clarification issued by the Commissioner of Health and Family Welfare Services, the circular (dated Jan 22) which mentioned airport staff as “frontline workers” stands withdrawn. “No action should be taken on that circular,” the clarification read.

The Commissioner had issued a circular on Friday stating that staff working at Kempegowda International Airport KIAL, Mangaluru International Airport, and airports at Belagavi, Hubbali-Dharwad, Kalaburagi, Mysuru and Bidar “are permitted for Covid-19 vaccine on priority basis.”

The development came days after Bangalore International Airport Limited Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer Hari K Marar wrote to the Health Department on January 20, urging authorities to administer vaccine to those working at airports.

In response to the demand, the Commissioner had also ordered the respective district health and family welfare officers to “make necessary arrangements in this regard and to ensure staff members at airports receive the Covid vaccine as per the existing protocol.”

The clarification read, “At airports in Karnataka, only the staff which is covered as healthcare worker or frontline worker as defined in the Government of India instructions will be included in the list for Covid-19 vaccination.”

Till date, over 1.84 lakh healthcare workers have been inoculated in Karnataka since the vaccination drive began on January 16. As per the data issued by the Department of Health and Family Welfare Services, 56 per cent of the total target beneficiaries have recieved the vaccine shot so far.

Meanwhile, Health Minister K Sudhakar said, “While some have reported side effects, there has been no casualty.”

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