Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Sunday said that coronavirus related deaths are being under-reported deaths in the country and also asked Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan about the vaccine for the virus.
"Since the beginning, everything has been done in a haphazard way. No country has lost as many doctors and healthcare workers as India has to the pandemic... This government has not accepted yet that we are in community transmission stage. Had we devised a well-planned strategy, this situation would not have created," Mr Chowdhury said in the Lower House during a discussion on the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The pandemic cannot be prevented but the intensity of pandemic could have been mitigated. The measure of mitigation was not up to the mark. I have doubts over coronavirus deaths in the country. I think there are serious under-reported deaths in our country. How many hospitals in the country can issue a medical certification for causing of death? Harsh Vardhan ji tell us, when the vaccine will come? Indians are waiting for the vaccine," he said.
Nearly 30 candidates for the COVID-19 vaccine are under development across the country, by industry and academia, Dr Harsh Vardhan said on Friday.
"Nationally, nearly 30 COVID-19 vaccine candidates are under development, by both industry and academia. These vaccines are in different stages of pre-clinical and clinical development of which three candidates are in the advanced stage of Phase I/II/III trials and four are in advanced pre-clinical development stage. Support is also being extended for the development of vaccine-associated research resources, the establishment of clinical trial sites, and notifying enabling regulatory guidelines," Mr Vardhan said in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha.
The Congress MP from Berhampore asked Harsh Vardhan about funds the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare received from PM CARES Fund.
He also requested him to take some steps to help states in fighting COVID-19."People say the second wave will come and asked the union health ministry to take some steps to help states fighting COVID-19," he added.
The Congress leader said that there should be a separate ministry for migrant labourers and added that some money should be used from PM CARES Fund for them.
"There should be a separate ministry for migrant labourers. When lockdown started, they started heading home and there was no one to help them. The government did not take step which we can admire. More than 1,000 migrant labourers have died. I request some money should be used from PM CARES Fund for migrant labourers," Harsh Vardhan said.
He said that the coronavirus situation in West Bengal is worse and urged the Health Minister to take some strong steps for West Bengal.
"The situation in West Bengal is worse. Private hospitals are taking advantage of the situation over charging from patients like butchers. There is no record of people dying in Bengal. There is the autocratic rule in Bengal. I request Harsh Vardhan to take some strong steps for West Bengal," he said.
India's COVID-19 case tally crossed 54-lakh mark with a spike of 92,605 new cases and 1,133 deaths, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Sunday.
The total case tally stands at 54,00,620 including 10,10,824 active cases, 43,03,044 cured/discharged/migrated cases and 86,752 deaths, the Ministry said.