Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with Chief Ministers of the Northeastern states on COVID-19 situation on Tuesday.
The interaction was attended by the CMs of Nagaland, Tripura, Sikkim, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Assam. Union Ministers for Home, Defence, Health, DONER and other Ministers were present during the interaction.
The Chief Ministers briefed about the progress of vaccination in their states and steps being taken to take vaccines to far-flung areas. They also discussed the issue of vaccine hesitancy and measures being taken to overcome it. They gave an account of improvement in medical infrastructure to better tackle Covid cases and the support lent through the PM CARES Fund. They gave assurance of taking timely action to bring down the positivity rate as well as the number of cases in their States.
PM Modi lauded the people, health workers and the governments of Northeast for their hard work in the fight against the pandemic, however, he expressed worry over the growing number of cases in some districts and stressed on the need to catch these signals and take strict actions at the micro-level.
The Prime Minister reemphasized the use of micro containment protocol in dealing with the situation. He asked to make full use of the experience and best practices gathered over the last one and half years in this regard.
He said that in the ‘vaccine for all, free for all’ campaign of the central government, Northeast too has the same importance and we need to keep accelerating the vaccination process. To deal with the myths pertaining to vaccination and mobilising people, the Prime Minister asked to enlist the help of social, educational institutes, celebrities and also the organizations of religious faith. He asked to accelerate the vaccination drive in the areas where spread of the virus is expected.
Referring to the recent Cabinet approval of Rs 23,000 crore package for improving the infrastructure for testing and treatment, the Prime Minister said that the package will help in strengthening the health infrastructure of Northeast. This package will expedite testing, diagnostics, genome sequencing in Northeast. He stressed on the need for quickly increasing number of beds, oxygen facilities and paediatric care infrastructure in Northeast. The Prime Minister informed that hundreds of oxygen plants are being established in the country through PM-CARES and Northeast too got about 150 plants, and requested the Chief Ministers to complete the process of establishing these plants quickly.
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