Modi to chair all-party meet to review COVID-19 situation Friday
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to chair an all-party meeting this Friday to review the COVID-19 situation in India, according to reports. The meeting comes on the heels of the PM's efforts to take stock of the development of a vaccine against COVID-19. India has notably reported the second-highest number of COVID-19 infections in the world and the third-highest number of deaths.
Modi to raise issue of vaccine roll-out: Report
Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, Home Minister Amit Shah, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi are likely to attend the meeting, sources told NDTV. The Parliamentary Affairs Ministry has approached floor leaders of all the parties, they said. A person familiar with the matter told Hindustan Times that Modi will raise the issue of the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in the meeting.
This would be second all-party meet on COVID-19
Friday's all-party meeting would be the second such meet on the COVID-19 situation. The PM had last interacted with the floor leaders of all the parties on the matter in April through a video conference. During that meeting, he had suggested extending the first coronavirus lockdown that was imposed in late-March to stem the spread of the viral disease.
Earlier today, Modi held meeting with 3 teams developing vaccines
Earlier on Monday, the PM had held a virtual meeting with three teams developing COVID-19 vaccines in India: Gennova Biopharma, Biological E, and Dr. Reddy's Laboratories. During the meeting, he had urged the teams to "make extra efforts to use simple language to inform the general public about the vaccine." Reportedly, matters relating to logistics, transport, cold chain, etc., for vaccine delivery were discussed.
Modi had toured 3 cities to review vaccine development Saturday
On Saturday, he had toured three cities to review the vaccine development at Bharat Biotech (Hyderabad), Serum Institute of India (Pune), and Zydus Cadila (Ahmedabad). SII CEO Adar Poonawalla later said the government will likely buy 300-400 million doses of its "Covishield" vaccine by July.
How bad is the COVID-19 situation in India?
According to the Union Health Ministry, as of Monday morning, India reported a total of 94,31,691 COVID-19 cases, with 38,772 fresh infections in the past 24 hours. The total cases include 4,46,952 active infections while the recovery rate is 93.8%. The death toll is 1,37,139, which the Health Ministry said Monday is among the lowest deaths per million population recorded globally.