The threat of Covid remains and we have to focus on vaccination, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today, urging countrymen to shed vaccine hesitancy and get vaccinated in large numbers.
On his monthly radio programme, Mann Ki Baat, the PM said he has been fully vaccinated and also cited the example of his mother, underscoring that vaccines are safe.
The PM urged citizens to not fall for rumours against vaccines and trust science and India's scientists.
The programme was broadcast on the entire network of All India Radio and Doordarshan and also on the AIR News website www.newsonair.com and Newsonair mobile App.
Here are the highlights of PM Modi's Mann Ki Baat:
PM Modi hailed the feat of administering over 86 lakh vaccine doses in a single day on June 21 at the start of the new phase of inoculation under which all adults are being given free jabs by the Union government.
If someone says corona is gone, do not be under this mistaken notion, Modi said, adding that the virus ailment is a "master of disguise" which surfaces in myriad new forms, a reference to its mutants.
"And to protect ourselves from it, we have two ways. One is adhering to the protocol for corona; wearing a mask, frequently washing hands with soap, maintaining social distancing. The other way is, along with all this, getting vaccinated. This too is a good safety shield," he said.
"Those who are spreading rumours on vaccines, let them be. We all will do our work and ensure people around us get vaccinated. The threat of Covid remains and we have to focus on vaccination as well as follow COVID-19 protocols."
PM Modi urged people to not pay attention to rumours about vaccines and get vaccinated while informing other too about it. He underlined that scientists have worked very hard to come up with vaccines and it is absolutely safe.
PM Modi today encouraged people to end vaccine hesitancy, underlining that he himself has been vaccinated and so is his nonagenarian mother. The PM also highlighted the centre's efforts in ramping up the vaccination drive.
"When talking about the Olympics, how can we not remember Milkha Singh Ji. When he was hospitalised, I got a chance to speak to him, I had requested him to motivate the athletes going for Tokyo Olympics": PM Modi
PM Modi begins his Mann Ki Baat address remembering sprint legend Milkha Singh, who passed away earlier this month.
New variants are a concern in India, where more than half the population is still not vaccinated. Only about 5.6 per cent of India's adult population of 95 crore has received two doses.
The PM's office on Saturday said that 128 districts in the country have vaccinated more than 50 per cent of the 45+ population for the coronavirus.