May 13, 2021 11:57:00 pm
The ruling BJP in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has accused Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray of “discriminating” against the civic body by “ignoring” its request for permission to purchase Covid-19 vaccines by floating a global tender, while the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) does the same.
The BJP on Thursday directed the civic administration to immediately float global tenders for vaccines without waiting for the state government’s permission.
“Mayor Murlidhar Mohol, leader of the House Ganesh Bidkar and senior leaders of city BJP in PMC have urged the municipal commissioner to float a global tender for vaccines immediately without waiting for permission from the state government,” said BJP legislator Siddharth Shirole.
“We are no longer waiting for the consent of the chief minister. Lives are at stake, every delay is critical. Based on the precedent set by giving consent to BMC, we have asked the PMC commissioner to float a tender immediately,” he added.
He also accused Thackeray of “misusing” his position. The BJP leader claimed that the chief minister had ignored a request from PMC, sent on April 20, seeking permission to float a tender for 25 lakh vaccines. “The chief minister is using resources of the entire state to save lives in only one city and misusing his position. The denial of permission to PMC for 23 days to buy its own vaccine… all for a fake PR boost to the so-called BMC model,” Shirole said.
Earlier in the day, Bidkar said, “The state government is discriminating between PMC and BMC by giving priority to BMC in the pandemic situation.”
He said the state government should communicate in writing its stand on PMC’s request. “The state government needs to declare a standard operating procedure for procuring vaccines by local civic bodies. There should be guidelines based on which vaccines should be purchased. The PMC does not have any expertise in purchasing vaccines so state government guidelines are a must,” said Bidkar.
Meanwhile, the PMC, with the help of Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture, launched punevaccination.in, a dashboard on vaccination, where information on availability of vaccine doses in each of the centres will be displayed with Google mapping of all centres. The PMC has come under criticism for mismanagement of the vaccination process as eligible citizens have struggled to get appointments.
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