Daily inoculations drop from 45 lakh on April 5 to 29 lakh.
Amidst complaints of vaccine shortages raised by several States, India crossed a milestone of administering 10 crore doses as on Saturday. The Health Ministry claimed that India had administered these doses within 85 days, faster than the United States’ 89 days and China’s 103 days.
However, the 29 lakh doses administered within the last 24 hours were a significant decline from the 45 lakh doses — an all-time record — administered on April 5 (Monday). Since that high, the country’s daily vaccinations have seen a decline every day of the week, except for April 8, when it registered a moderate jump to 36 lakh doses and declined again on April 9.
Data from the CoWin database, that displays vaccination trends over a monthly timeline, shows that except for the weekends, the number of vaccinations on a given day is usually more than the previous day.
This particularly coincides with a steady increase in daily vaccinations that went down to 6.2 lakh on March 29 but then accelerated everyday to reach 41 lakh on April 3.
However, from March 29 to April 10, the number of daily infections has zoomed from about 58,000 to over 115,000.
This also coincides with vaccinations being opened for everyone above 45.
Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Thursday that 13.5 crore doses of vaccines were available, of which 10 crore had been administered until Saturday. The rest were either in the ‘pipeline’ or in stock. With India administering 30 lakh to 40 lakhs doses every day, it suggests that the existing stockpile should be available for 10-13 days, though every State gets varying replenishments based on past usage, vulnerable population and requirement.
Covishield, which constitutes around 90% of the doses administered in India, is facing serious supply constraints. Cutting across party lines, several States have flagged shortages in the last few days.
Punjab and Rajasthan have warned the Centre of diminishing coronavirus vaccine stocks. Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said his state had only five days of vaccines left. Rajasthan Chief Minister, Ashok Gehlot, said stock were set to run out in 48 hours. Delhi Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal, also said that he had less than a week’s supply. Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, in a call with State chief ministers this week called for a ‘Tika utsav’ (a festival of inoculations) from the 11-14th April.