Coronavirus news updates: CoWin glitches cause crowding in Mumbai, delays in Goa; Rajnath, RS Prasad, Vardhan get shots
RS Sharma, chairman of the Empowered Group (EG) on COVID-19 Vaccine Administration, said there were no glitches in the system and that citizens can register for their vaccine by using the Co-WIN 2.0 web portal or Aarogya Setu app
The Centre on Tuesday claimed that around 50 lakh people have registered on the Co-Win 2.0 portal since Monday without any glitch in the system and that over 2.08 lakh beneficiaries above 60 or those between the ages of 45 and 60 with comorbidities have received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine till this afternoon.
However, visuals of confusion and chaos at a COVID vaccination centre in Mumbai's Bandra Kurla Complex on the second day of Phase 2 of the country's COVID-19 vaccination drive, presented a different image, according to several media reports.
A clip of the incident went viral on social media, which showed the vaccination centre crowded with people ignoring all social distancing norms.
Firstpost could not independently confirm the authenticity of the clip, however, The Indian Express, attributed a glitch in the CoWin platform behind it in a video shared on Twitter.
Situation at the BKC vaccination centre in Mumbai today, when the Co-WIN portal malfunctioned. They have come to get vaccinated; they might leave with CoVID. pic.twitter.com/UTvZyW3yOD
— Anand Ranganathan (@ARanganathan72) March 2, 2021
Rajesh Dere, dean of BKC jumbo vaccination centre, speaking to Hindustan Times, said: “There was some technical glitch in the CoWIN portal due to which, there was crowding at BKC vaccination centre...” Dere was quoted as saying that the glitch was resolved by 11.20 am and the crowd was brought under control soon after. As per an India Today report, many beneficiaries, hearing about the walk-in facility came directly to the centre.
Speaking to India Today, 60-year-old Vivek Devrukar said, “I tried to register on the website but faced glitches. So, I directly reached a centre near me.”
A woman who did not wish to be named spoke of similar issues to India Today: “There are nine OTPs in my phone. CoWIN opened, we even entered the Adhaar details but it said change your Id. We then entered PAN card details but were still not able to book an appointment. After all this, the platform gave us names of Hinduja Hospital and SL Raheja, both of which are not registered for vaccination.” The initial hours of vaccination on Tuesday in Goa saw a snag in the CoWin portal affect the COVID-19 vaccination process for senior citizens at private hospitals, a health official told PTI.
The portal developed a glitch soon after the process for vaccination began after 9 am, forcing many senior citizens who had gathered at the hospitals to take the first dose to leave. "As the snag stalled the entire process in the first one hour, several senior citizens had to go back. We regret the inconvenience caused to them," the official said. The process restarted at 2.30 pm after the snag was fixed, the official told PTI.
Meanwhile, the Centre on Tuesday evening directed states to utilise all the private hospitals for the vaccination drive. “Private hospitals not empanelled under the above mentioned three categories have also been permitted to operate as COVID Vaccination Centers (CVCs)…States/UTs can proactively make efforts to use these private hospitals as CVCs,” the Union Health Ministry said.
'No glitches in new version of CoWin,' says Centre
RS Sharma, chairman of the Empowered Group (EG) on COVID-19 Vaccine Administration, however, said there were no glitches in the system.
"What happened was that people were looking for an app on Playstore which appeared similar to Co-WIN and started using that when no mobile app meant for registration is actually present right now," he said.
Sharma informed that citizens can register and book an appointment for vaccination, anytime and anywhere, using the Co-WIN 2.0 web portal (visit https://selfregistration.cowin.gov.in to register) or through IT applications such as Aarogya Setu, he added.
"Since last morning, when the registrations were opened up at 9 am, we had about 50 lakh registrations on our site. Though there were some glitches in the first version of the Co-WIN which was launched on 16 January, we have had no glitches in the new version of the system," he said. He said the government is watching the system closely as it has to be "highly scalable".
"It should be able to take care of a huge amount of load. After all, it is a program with which we will be vaccinating 1/6th of humanity and this program has to cater to millions of people at the same time," he added. The number of transactions and data transmission will be very large, he said. " We want data to be secure and free from cyber-attacks. We are taking the best security practices. We are only collecting data in the form of name, age and gender as we need to monitor the second dose," he said.
He further stated that state governments are coordinating with hospitals and supplying vaccines to them and "we are encouraging them to involve more and more private hospitals".
According to government officials, in the first two phases so far, 1,48,55,073 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in the country till 1 pm on Tuesday, of which 67,04,856 healthcare workers have been given the first dose of the vaccine and 25,98,192 healthcare workers have been administered the second dose.
Besides, 53,43,219 frontline workers have been administered the first dose of vaccine till now, they said. As many as 2,08,791 people above 60 years of age and those aged 45-60 years with comorbidities have taken the first dose of the vaccine, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan stated.
Slew of big names take vaccine A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi took the first dose of the indigenously developed COVAXIN jab at AIIMS in Delhi and appealed to all those who are eligible to get themselves inoculated, Tuesday witnessed some other big names from the ruling party, including Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Health Minister Vardhan, actor and leader of the Makkal Needhi Maiam Kamal Haasan, JKNC leader Farooq Abdullah and cricketer Ravi Shastri receiving their first dose of the vaccine.
Prasad and Vardhan tweeted that they had received Covaxin.
On Monday, AIIMS chief Dr Randeep Guleria had said that the prime minister's decision to take the first dose of the COVAXIN COVID-19 vaccine should eliminate any hesitancy from the minds of people about the vaccine.
Rajnath, taking the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine at the Indian Army's Research and Referral Hospital in New Delhi, said the vaccine is completely safe.
बस हो गया! The first dosage of COVID-19 vaccine was administered to me at RR Hospital today. India’s resolve for making the country COVID free has been strengthened by this inoculation drive. The Vaccine is completely safe and hassle free. #LargestVaccineDrive pic.twitter.com/sKsrtLeGqi — Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) March 2, 2021
"I salute the efforts of India's scientists and doctors who developed the vaccine in a short span of time. I also thank the doctors and paramedic staff at the RR Hospital for the vaccination. I urge everyone who is eligible to take the vaccine and make India COVID-free," he added.
Union minister and senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad was administered the first dose of the anti- Coronavirus vaccine in Patna.
He said all the Union ministers have decided to voluntarily pay the price fixed for the vaccine.
Took Covaxin- vaccine for Corona made in India, at AIIMS Patna. All the Union Ministers have voluntarily decided to pay the price fixed for it. Accordingly, I gave donation of ₹250 to the Hospital, even though vaccine is being offered free of cost in Bihar. pic.twitter.com/EpdgRNuMI9
— Ravi Shankar Prasad (@rsprasad) March 2, 2021
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and his wife Nutan Goel took the first dose of Covaxin at the Delhi Heart and Lung Institute. They also said that they have paid Rs 250 each for the vaccine jab. Completing the observation period of half an hour after taking the first dose of the vaccine, Vardhan addressed the media and asked all eligible people to get vaccinated.
"Today, my wife and I took the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at Delhi Heart and Lung Hospital around half-and-hour ago. The observation time of half-and-hour is completed. Hospital authorities have informed me that my wife and I have been given COVAXIN. In the last half-and-hour, I and my wife did not face any kind of difficulty," he told reporters.
Stating that the Government of India has made the vaccine available for its citizens in thousands of private as well as government hospitals, Vardhan said that in the fight against COVID-19 , this vaccine will act as a "sanjeevani" for the people. Jammu and Kashmir National Conference president Farooq Abdullah, a Lok Sabha MP from Srinagar, was given the first dose of the vaccine at the Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Soura.
His son Omar took to Twitter to thank the doctors and other staff at the hospital for administering the vaccine to his father.
Thank you to the doctors, nurses and staff at SKIMS, Srinagar. Today my 85 year old father & my mother had their first COVID jab. My father has a number of health issues including being on immunosuppressants for a kidney transplant. If he can get the vaccine, you should as well. pic.twitter.com/V6yo1zyuGR — Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) March 2, 2021
Hassan, the founder of the Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM), was administered with the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a Chennai hospital.
"I took the coronavirus vaccine at Sri Ramachandra Hospital. Those who care not only for themselves but also for others should get vaccinated," Haasan said in a tweet that was accompanied with a picture of him getting vaccinated.
"Immunisation of the body immediately (and) vaccination against corruption next month. Get ready," Haasan said in an apparent reference to the 6 April Assembly elections which his party is set to contest.
ஸ்ரீ ராமச்சந்திரா மருத்துவமனையில் கொரோனாவைரஸ் தடுப்பூசி போட்டுக்கொண்டேன். தன் மேல் மாத்திரமல்ல, பிறர் மேல் அக்கறையுள்ளவர்களும் போட்டுக்கொள்ள வேண்டும். உடல் நோய்த் தடுப்பூசி உடனடியாக, ஊழல் நோய்த் தடுப்பூசி அடுத்த மாதம். தயாராகிவிடுங்கள். pic.twitter.com/SmZEUr4qqT
— Kamal Haasan (@ikamalhaasan) March 2, 2021
In Ahmedabad, the Indian cricket team's head coach Ravi Shastri on Tuesday received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a city hospital. Shastri, who is 58, thanked the staff at the Apollo Hospital for their co-operation and support on Twitter.
Karnataka minister triggers row
Karnataka agriculture minister BC Patil on Tuesday courted controversy after taking the COVID-19 vaccine at his home instead of going to a designated hospital, drawing criticism from state health minister K Sudhakar and others.
Patil, 64, and his wife took the vaccine at his Hirekerur residence in Haveri district, on the second day of the vaccination drive to cover people aged above 60 and 45-plus with co-morbidities.
Took the #COVID19Vaccine with my wife, at my Hirekerur house from the Govt. doctors today.
While 'Made In India' vaccines are being immensely appreciated by many countries, some vested interest groups are spreading false information about the vaccines.@DDChandanaNews | @DHFWKA pic.twitter.com/yE6fYZTddJ
— Kourava B.C.Patil (@bcpatilkourava) March 2, 2021
As several social media users questioned his decision to take the vaccine at home, Sudhakar said the protocol is to get it in the hospital.
When reporters sought Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa's reaction, he said getting vaccinated was more important than the place where the inoculation happened. Patil defended himself, saying he has not committed any crime and wanted to avoid trouble for the public.
"Have I done any theft or robbery? I have only taken the vaccine at home, which is not a crime," the minister told reporters.
He said it was good that his inoculation became public which would inspire others to take the shot. Patil added that had he gone to the hospital, it would have caused trouble for people waiting there.
Fadnavis alleges corruption in COVID-19 management in Maharashtra
BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday alleged corruption in the measures taken by the Shiv Sena-led Maharashtra government in handling the COVID-19 situation in the state, reported PTI.
Speaking in the Legislative Assembly, the Leader of the Opposition also referred to a Central survey and said the number of COVID-19 deaths in Maharashtra could have been fewer by 30,900 and the cases by 9.55 lakh had the state government handled the situation properly.
Launching a broadside against the state government on various issues, Fadnavis wondered why an FIR was not registered in connection with the death of a Pune-based woman and accused the government of pressuring the police.
Just under 8,000 new cases in Maha, no deaths in Delhi
Maharashtra reported 7,863 new coronavirus infections on Tuesday which took the state's caseload to 21,69,330, a health department official said. The toll due to the pandemic reached 52,238 with 54 new fatalities, he said. On Monday, after reporting more than 8,000 cases for five days, the state had witnessed a slight dip in fresh infections at 6,397 cases.
On Tuesday, 6,332 patients were discharged from hospitals, taking the number of recoveries in the state to 20,36,790. Maharashtra's recovery rate of COVID-19 cases is 93.89 percent while the fatality rate is 2.41 per cent, the official said.
Out of 1,64,21,879 COVID-19 samples tested so far, 21,69,330 tested positive, at a positivity rate of 13.21 percent. A total of 75,521 new tests were conducted during the day. Currently, 3,55,784 people are in home quarantine and 3,558 under institutional quarantine while there are 79,093 active COVID-19 patients in the state.
In Mumbai, 849 new COVID-19 cases were reported taking the city's tally to 3,27,621, while its toll increased to 11,481 with two new fatalities. As many as 703 new cases were detected in Pune city which took its tally to 2,10,399 and with three new deaths, the death toll in the city has gone up to 4,578. Nagpur and Amravati municipal corporation areas in eastern Maharashtra reported 809 and 483 new COVID-19 cases, respectively.
Delhi recorded no new COVID-19 fatality on Tuesday, even as 217 new cases pushed the city's infection tally to 6,39,681, and the positivity rate fell from 0.44 per cent to 0.33 percent, the health department said. The new cases came out of 66,624 tests for COVID-19 conducted on Monday, as per data shared by the state's health department.
Seventy-eight more people have recovered from the disease in the National Capital, it showed. Delhi had recorded 175 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday. The death toll due to the disease in the city stands at 10,911.
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