Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Sunday, 4 January, hit out at the Opposition for ‘politicising’ the process of approving the coronavirus vaccine.
Taking to Twitter, Vardhan said that the leaders were trying to “discredit well laid out science-backed protocols followed for approving” the vaccines.
This comes a day after Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav has said that he will not get vaccinated for COVID-19 now as the "BJP's vaccine" could not be trusted.
"I will not take the COVID-19 vaccine at this moment. That too given by Bharatiya Janata Party. How can I trust BJP's vaccine, not a chance. When our government will be formed, everyone will get a free vaccine. We cannot take the BJP vaccine", said Yadav at a press conference.
"What is the need for dry dun in the country. This government was eliminating coronavirus by clapping hands and beating utensils. What is the need for such a large cold chain? What is the need for the vaccine?", said Yadav, mocking the BJP.
Yadav further went on to promise free vaccine if the Samajwadi Party was elected to power in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh elections scheduled for 2022.
‘Approved Too Soon’, Says Tharoor
Congress leader, Shashi Tharoor said that the vaccine was approved "too soon".
"The Covaxin has not yet had Phase 3 trials. Approval was premature and could be dangerous. @drharshvardhan should please clarify. Its use should be avoided till full trials are over. India can start with the AstraZeneca vaccine in the meantime," Tharoor tweeted.
‘Very Unfortunate’: Anurag Thakur on Yadav’s Statement
Akhilesh's statement drew sharp reactions from the BJP.
Akhilesh Yadav's statement - that he "won't get vaccinated as it is a BJP vaccine" is very unfortunate...What can be more unfortunate than a young leader linking COVID vaccine to a political party. It shows he can't think above politics", said BJP leader and Union Minister Anurag Thakur.
Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Minister Narottam Mishra told ANI, “We can't even call him a misled youth. When he never listened to his uncle or father, why would he listen to the country? This is a policy of appeasement. It's not good to spread rumour about vaccine.”
"Akhilesh Yadav does not have trust in the vaccine, and people of Uttar Pradesh do not have trust in Akhilesh Yadav. His raising questions on the vaccine is an insult to doctors and scientists of the country. He should tender an apology,” said Deputy Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Keshav Prasad Maurya.
Uttar Pradesh has nearly 14,000 active cases and has recorded over 8,000 deaths linked to the virus.
(With inputs from ANI)
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