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The Message Behind PM Modi Taking Covaxin Shot

As the second phase of vaccination against Covid-19 starts in India and caters to people above 60 years and people with co-morbidities above 45 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took the vaccine on the morning of March 1, 2021.

The PM taking the vaccine shot at the beginning of the second phase is not just a news-item but an ideal way of signal messaging and exhibition of value. Why? Read on.

  • While launching the vaccination drive back in January, PM Modi and the administration made it clear that the health workers, sanitation and frontline workers will get the shots on priority. PM Modi had made it clear that politicians can’t get the vaccine out of turn in this phase and lived up to his own statement.
  • In the second phase, PM Modi taking the vaccine shots at the beginning is significant. It assures the senior citizens who may still be hesitant about taking the vaccine. It should be noted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi also comes in the category of senior citizens who are above 60 years of age.
  • Though India followed scientific method in approving the vaccines for emergency use, a certain section in the media and opinion-making sphere put forward a perception that among the two vaccines, Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin has less credence. PM Modi took the Covaxin shot which should address the concern now. It should be noted that though both the vaccines available in India are ‘made in India’, Covaxin is fully developed in India.

The Other Value Propositions of India’s Vaccination
  • Domestically, India ensured that health workers, frontline workers and safai karmacharis get the vaccine on priority, and not the politicians and elites who can use the power of influence and money.
  • While distributing the vaccine abroad, India ensured that it is not the size or economy of any country that matters but a fair process. Thus, India’s neighbours and many small countries, including island nations got the vaccine on priority.
  • India didn’t let politics come in the way of vaccine distribution. Though the Canadian government had commented on India’s internal affairs and sought confrontation, when it requested for the access to vaccine, their plea was accommodated.
  • By ensuring vaccines to all the personnel of UN Peacekeeping Mission, India has proved that its priority at the international level is also guided by the strong sense of values.