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Allow us to purchase vaccines directly with state funds: Mamata in letter to PM Modi

She further stated, “The supply of oxygen also, as you know, must be assured and certain. SAIL is meeting up our need for the moment and we shall be grateful if you kindly instruct them too for ensuring steady supplies.”

Written by Atri Mitra | Kolkata |
Updated: April 18, 2021 5:48:15 pm
Mamata Banerjee, Oxygen, Narendra Modi, oxygen demands in west bengal, india news, indian expressCM Mamata Banerjee (File photo)

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi once again seeking the Centre’s permission to “purchase vaccination doses directly with state funds and launch a massive free vaccination campaign in the state covering the entire population”.

“You may recall that I had written to you on February 24, 2021 to allow the state to purchase vaccination doses directly with state funds and launch a massive free vaccination campaign in the state covering the entire population,” she wrote.

Urging the Centre to increase the supply of Remedesvir and Tocilizumab, she added, “The supply of Remedesvir and Tocilizumab is extremely scarce and uncertain today, which has been a matter of grave concern for doctors here. We need around Rs 6,000 vials of Remdesvir and 1,000 vials of Tocilizumab daily. However, at present only 1000 vials of Remdesvir is available daily and no fresh supply of Tocilizumab is coming. It may kindly be seen that the relevant authorities step up their efforts to ensure steady supply of these most essential medicines as soon as possible.”

She further stated, “The supply of oxygen also, as you know, must be assured and certain. SAIL is meeting up our need for the moment and we shall be grateful if you kindly instruct them too for ensuring steady supplies.”

Banerjee also said that the supply of vaccine from the Centre has been “scarce and erratic”, which has been negatively affecting the vaccination programme.

“While West Bengal is one of the best performers in vaccination, it is now suffering because of uncertainties of supply from Government of India end. We have to vaccinate around 2.7 crore and we need 5.4 crore doses. We request for your urgent intervention to ensure that the state gets its requirement of vaccine doses fulfilled at the earliest,” she wrote.

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