Sisodia urges Centre to vaccinate Indians first before exporting COVID-19 vaccines

New Delhi: Urging the Central government to vaccinate Indian citizens first before exporting the coronavirus vaccines, Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia on Sunday said the Centre exported 6.5 crore vaccine doses to 93 countries in the last 3 months at a time when COVID-19 cases are surging in India.

Addressing media, Sisodia said in those vaccine doses were not exported, they could have been used to vaccinate and save the lives of people who dies due to COVID-19 infection.

“The Government of India exported COVID vaccines to 93 countries in the last three months. It gave 6.5 crore doses to them. Around 1 lakh people have died of COVID during the second wave in India. If not exported, these vaccines could have saved the lives of these people,” the Deputy Chief Minister said.

He said that other countries also follow international treaties, but they did not export vaccines and prioritised their own people.

“Some people in Central government would say that we are bound by international treaties. US, France and European countries also follow these treaties but none of them prioritized other countries. Only we gave vaccines to others when our own people were dying,” Sisodia said.

“Was it (export of vaccines to other countries) done just to improve the image of Central government and earn accolades from some other countries? I request the Central government to vaccinate everyone in the country before exporting vaccines,” he added.

Earlier today, he also tweeted about the matter and said the Delhi government has approved a budget of 600 crores to buy vaccines but there is a shortage of vaccines with manufacturers.

“It is a good thing to worry about the world, but the countries of America, Canada, Europe, are starting to arrange vaccines for their people first from around the world. Only France exported 1 lakh vaccines last month. Our central government has donated 6.6 crore since March,” he tweeted.

“The Delhi government has approved a budget of 600 crores to buy vaccines for the people of Delhi. Many more states are also prepared in this way. But the vaccine is not available. Because from March till now, the central government has showered favour on 93 countries including Arab countries and exported 6.6 crore vaccines,” Sisodia said in another tweet.