Varsity students to be vaccinated

Staff Correspondent

1 June, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque on Monday said country’s public and private university students will be brought under the ongoing nationwide vaccination programme against coronavirus in a bid to resume academic activities.

“Students from all universities, including medical, will be given vaccine. We want all universities to start academic activities. Therefore, we will try to give the vaccine to all the students and teachers of public and private universities on a priority basis,” he said.

The health minister came up with the statement while talking to reporters after a cabinet meeting at Secretariat on Monday.

Mentioning that several lakh doses of vaccine are needed for the public and private universities, he said the government could ensure the vaccine as it has already ordered 1.5 crore Chinese vaccine and hoped to get about same amount of Russian vaccine. “We are also trying to bring Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. Discussion is going on with India to this end.”

“We hope more vaccine will come in the next days. There is also good progress in discussion about importing Russian vaccine as we have gone to agreement stage. We hope to get the vaccine soon. We hope we will get 50 lakh doses of Chinese vaccine in June, 50 lakh in July and 50 lakh in August,” Zahid Maleque said.

Mentioning that the Russian vaccine will be imported through G-to-G system, he said the Bangladesh government also has given proposal to manufacture the vaccine here.

“If five crore people are vaccinated, our country will be safe as it will cover all the vulnerable groups. The government is trying to avail 10 crore of vaccines," the health minister said.

He said the new registration for Covid-19 vaccine will resume after the arrival of Chinese vaccines in Bangladesh.

He said that the Pfizer vaccines, which arrived on the day, would be given as per registration serial already made for Covid-19 vaccination.

Zahid Maleque said the transmission of the deadly virus has increased alarmingly in the bordering districts.

The health ministry wanted immediate implementation of stricter restrictions in bordering districts as infections and deaths from Covid-19 were increasing alarmingly in those areas, he said.

“The cabinet is considering the matter…Perhaps they are delaying it out of consideration for farmers. But we want the lockdown to be implemented quickly in the proposed districts,” he said.

He feared that delaying the decision to impose a stricter lockdown on seven districts on the border with India will only lead to a sharper increase in coronavirus cases.