Prime Minister Narendra Modi today flagged off phase two of the nationwide Covid-19 inoculation drive by getting vaccinated himself. Around 27 crore people are expected to be covered in this phase - of which around 10 crore are those above 60, like the Prime Minister.
He left for the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, a little before daybreak, even as the streets of the national capital were still mostly deserted. A short video released by his office shows him arriving at the premier institute with a few aides and without much ado.
Wearing a mask, a gamosa - the traditional piece of clothing identified closely with Assam - over his off-white pyjama-kurta, and his trademark shawl, the Prime Minister is seen greeted and received by hospital officials, including AIIMS chief, Dr Randeep Guleria. Settling down on a chair, he chats up the two attending nurses - sisters P Niveda, a native of Puducherry, and Rosamma Anil of Kerala. PM Modi is then seen filling up a form as protocol dictates and then folding up the left half-sleeve of his kurta, preparing to get jabbed, all dutifully supervised by Dr Guleria.
Sister Niveda then injects a dose of Covaxin on his arm even as he continues to chat - the big warm beam of smile never leaving his countenance through the whole process.