After the fiasco of promising free COVID-19 vaccines to Bihar if they win the elections, BJP has been getting criticised widely for doing politics over coronavirus vaccine.
As if to control the damage done, Union Minister Pratap Sarangi has said that all the citizens of India will get free COVID-19 vaccine.
Union Minister Pratap Sarangi on Sunday said all people of the country will be given free coronavirus vaccine, amidst the demand by the Opposition for a free vaccine for all and not only in poll-bound Bihar as announced by the BJP.
After addressing a campaign meeting for the November 3 assembly by-poll in Balasore, Union Minister Pratap Sarangi said an estimated Rs 500 odd will be spent on vaccination of each person. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that all people will be provided free of cost vaccines.
PM Modi, in a televised address to the nation on October 20, had said Indian scientists are in the process of developing several vaccines that are at different stages of clinical trials and the results seem encouraging.
Sarangi, the Union Minister of State for Animal Husbandry, Dairy, Fisheries and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises made the remark in reply to question raised by Odisha Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister, R P Swain.
Swain had sought clarification from Dharmendra Pradhan and Sarangi, the two Union ministers from Odisha, questioning them for their silence on their party BJP’s stand on free Covid-19 vaccination for the people of the state along the lines of the one being promised in Bihar.
Swain had tweeted: “I am asking questions to two Odisha union ministers from Balasore soil to clarify as to why the people of the state will not get free of cost COVID vaccine. The Union ministers should clarify BJPs stand on the corona vaccination in Odisha.”
The BJP announcement of free coronavirus vaccine for Bihar, where assembly polls begin this week, had kicked up a controversy with the opposition parties tearing into the NDA government alleging that the ruling party was using the pandemic for political reasons.
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said the announcement was in order as it was an election manifesto announcement.
The governments of Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Assam and Puduchchery have already announced free of cost Covid vaccines for the people of their states, while Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has demanded free vaccine for all citizens across the country.