Involvement of private firms can fasten the process of immunisation: Azim Premji

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Bengaluru: Indian business tycoon and Wipro founder-chairman Azim Premji has suggested the Centre allow private sector participation in order to speed up the vaccination process against coronavirus.At a post-budget interaction with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, the philanthropist said with the involvement of the private firms and institutions in the COVID-19 vaccination drive, over 50 crore people can be inoculated within two months (60 days).

“Deploying and administering the vaccine in large proportion is the key requirement today. The government is doing its best. But I would strongly suggest they should supplement the effort by involving private parties,” Premji said at the event organised by the Bangalore Chamber of Industry and Commerce.

“I think if the government was to engage the private industry quickly, we can rest assured that we can achieve coverage of 500 million people within 60 days,” Premji added.

Elaborating on how the private sector can participate in vaccination drive, Premji said that there is a possibility that the Serum Institute of India (SII) provides vaccine at about Rs 300 per shot to the hospitals and private nursing homes, which can then administer the jab at a cost of Rs 100 a shot.

Premji went on to say that the vaccines against Covid-19 have been developed in record time and the task now is to administer them in large proportions.

Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry has directed all states and union territories to enhance the pace of vaccination amid the recent surge in COVID-19 active cases, especially in five states.

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