Kerala CM welcomes High Court order allowing second Covishield jab after 4-week gap

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday said that his government was in agreement with the High Court’s ruling, allowing the second dose of COVISHIELD after four weeks from the first jab to those who want it earlier, and said the ball was now in the Centre’s court.

The CM, during a press meet held here, said it was now up to the central government to decide how to implement the Kerala High Court’s September 3 ruling and said that the Chief Secretary and the Health Secretary of the state government would be liaising with the Centre on this matter.

He also said that priority in vaccination would be given to those who are due and “overdue” for their second dose of the vaccine. Vijayan further said that the state has till date administered over 3 crore doses, including both first and second jabs, of the vaccine.

Of these, 2,18,54,153 received the first dose of vaccine and 82,46,563 received the second dose, he said and added that Kerala’s vaccination rate was much higher than the national average.

He said vaccination was hampered during the last few days due to vaccine shortage, but on Monday the state received 10 lakh doses and subsequently, the inoculation process has been going on smoothly.

In the meeting, he also said it was being noticed that the micro containment zones and containment zones were not being updated properly on the COVID portal and district websites and to ensure that it happens, an IT expert from the Information Technology Mission will be temporarily appointed to each District Emergency Management Centre.

In the last 24 hours, cases have been registered against 9,654 people for not wearing masks and legal action was taken against 8,852 for non-compliance with social distancing norms. A fine of Rs 18,85,800 was also levied, he added.

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