New Delhi: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI-M] has criticised the new vaccine policy by terming it as discriminatory, anti-equity, and haphazard.
The party said that it is an effort by the Centre to shift the entire responsibility onto the state governments.
“The new vaccine policy announced yesterday, is once again an effort by the central government to absolve itself from the colossal health crisis that they have created. There is an effort to shift the entire responsibility onto the state governments,” CPI-M Polit Bureau said in a statement.
“This policy is essentially an effort to liberalise vaccine sales and deregulate prices, without augmenting supply. The centre has failed for a year to do anything to ramp up adequate and needed vaccine supplies. This is a recipe for exclusion of crores of people who will find it unaffordable to procure the life-saving vaccine,” added the statement.
The Party said that the new vaccine policy would end any price regulation as the states have been asked to procure vaccines from the open market.
“Further, vaccines were so far free of cost to the states. Now, states have to ‘procure’ them from the ‘open market’ without any price regulation. The vaccine providers according to this latest policy, will declare their ‘self-set vaccine price’. This again is bound to exclude an overwhelming majority of our people. Further, this policy is bound to breed large-scale black marketeering and hoarding,” said the Polit Bureau, adding that “the state governments should be funded for the vaccines from the central exchequer”.
The CPI-M said that the new vaccine policy is “discriminatory, anti-equity, and haphazard, which is making of the Centre aimed at absolving itself from all responsibility”.
“This is not going to mitigate the pandemic or resolve the huge public health emergency that our people face. On the contrary, such a discriminatory policy will only make India more vulnerable to the pandemic surge,” said the Left party.
The CPI-M said India needs a Universal Mass Vaccination Programme to tackle the health emergency posed by the second wave of Covid-19.
“Only a mass universal vaccination programme can meet the needs of this emergency. A mass vaccination programme has to be free and universal. This has been independent India’s heritage and practice.” (PR)