Confusion continued at least in some vaccination centres in Kozhikode early on Thursday when people reached there unaware of the new rule that only those who have registered with the COWIN portal could get the jab.
Sources said that many of those who came to the vaccination centres early in the morning had their second dose due. They had hoped to get spot registration done and did not bother about checking the portal. Some of them claimed that they had not seen or read about the new rules. When complaints were raised, health officials were seen quickly pasting posters announcing the information on the premises.
Some others, mainly senior citizens, complained that they were not able to register themselves with the portal. There were a few who were apprehensive if the vaccine stock would run short by the time they get the appointment for vaccination. Health Department sources, however, said the process was more or less streamlined later as fresh stock of vaccines had already arrived. Primary health centres, community health centres and taluk hospitals could vaccinate between 100 and 250 people, respectively.
Meanwhile, the authorities were accused of flouting their own rules and holding mega vaccination camps and testing drives which led to a spike in fresh COVID-19 cases. Damodaran Kozhenchery, member of Red Cross Society, alleged in his complaint to the District Disaster Management Authority that uncontrollable crowd was seen at the mega camps held within Mukkom municipality limits on April 19 and 20. He claimed that around 600 people each had thronged these camps held at 10 centres. Physical-distancing norms were not followed and the police were found to be helpless, he alleged. According to an earlier official order, not more than 200 people could attend a public event.
Mr. Damodaran also alleged that though the government reduced this limit to 75 people on April 20, around 200 people each had attended a COVID testing camp and a vaccination camp held simultaneously at the community health centre, Mukkom. He sought action against officials under the Kerala Epidemic Diseases Ordinance, 2020, and sections of the Indian Penal Code.