Udayavni Special

PM responsible for second Covid wave, more to come if no vaccine strategy in place: Rahul


PTI, May 28, 2021, 4:11 PM IST

New Delhi: Lashing out at the government for its Covid management, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday held Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “theatrics” responsible for the second coronavirus wave and warned of more waves to come at the current rate of vaccination.

Calling on the government to evolve a vaccine strategy for the entire population, he noted that India is the vaccine capital of the world and it is possible to escalate the inoculation drive as only 3 per cent of the people have received their jabs.

Addressing an online press conference, Gandhi also termed the prime minister an event manager and said it is time for him to be a leader and show that he can organise vaccines for everyone.

“My understanding and the understanding of experts is the current rate of vaccination of 3 per cent almost guarantees a third wave of virus when the lockdown goes, which is completely unnecessary,” he warned. If the vaccination is at 50-60 per cent of the population, India would not have a third wave and certainly not a fourth or a fifth wave, Gandhi said. “The problem is there is no strategy. The prime minister doesn”t think strategically. He is an event manager. He thinks one event at a time. You don”t need events now as events will kill people, you need a strategy. The aim of the strategy should be to shut the space for corona,” he said.

Asserting that the more space you leave for the virus, the more dangerous it will become, the former Congress chief said Modi and his government have still not understood the virus and that is why they have no strategy.

Going by the current pace of vaccinations, the entire inoculation exercise will take another three years, till May 2024, and the country will witness several Covid waves by then. Gandhi said the prime minister created space for Covid to spread through his actions. “The PM is responsible for the second wave of virus, it is a result of his theatrics and the lack of his responsibility. It is time for the prime minister to be a leader and display leadership skills and show courage and not come out with excuses and blame others,” he said. The fact that India has so far vaccinated 3 per cent of its population means that 97 per cent can get the infection as “the government has left the door open for the disease to spread”. Gandhi also alleged that the Covid death rate in India is “a lie”. The government, he said, is trying to suppress information and that is why it is lying about the deaths. He also urged the government to not give the virus time or space and change the strategy. According to the Congress leader, the lockdown, masks and social distancing are temporary fixes. Vaccination is the permanent solution to COVID-19 and the government must evolve a strategy, he said.

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