To incentivise villages to give up vaccine hesitancy, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday announced a special development grant of Rs 10 lakh to every village that achieves 100 per cent vaccination target.
Appealing to the sarpanches and panches across the state to lead their villages in the fight against Covid-19, the Chief Minister urged them to motivate the people to undergo testing even in case of mild symptoms, and to get themselves vaccinated.
He was interacting virtually with village panchayats represented by more than 2,000 heads and members across over 4,000 locations in the rural parts through LED screens.
He informed them that his government had already sanctioned permission for the sarpanches to utilize up to Rs 5,000 per day from panchayat funds for emergency Covid treatment, upto a maximum of Rs 50,000.
Underlining the need to sensitize the rural population about the harmful effects of corona and the importance of early detection and treatment to save precious lives, the Chief Minister said this could only be done through special awareness campaigns.
He asked the panchayats to organize special medical camps, and to rope in the services of ex-servicemen, who had fought several wars during their active service career and were now part of the state’s fight against the pandemic.
He asked the sarpaches and panches to start ‘theekri pehra’ or community policing in their villages to prevent infected persons from coming in, and also distribute Fateh Kits to every person who tests positive, besides ensuring proper treatment in case oxygen saturation level goes below 94 per cent.
He urged the people living in villages to immediately quarantine themselves in case of any symptoms, and get themselves tested to ensure early detection of the infection.
Any laxity or complacency on their part could lead to severe complications at the later stage, which often has fatal results, said Amarinder Singh.
Pointing out that Punjab has an extensive healthcare network with 2,046 health and wellness centres, and another 800 to be made functional soon, he asked the panches and sarpanches to avail the healthcare services at these centres for the treatment of villagers infected with corona.
The Chief Minister said the state was making all-out efforts to procure sufficient stocks of vaccine from various sources for inoculation of 18 plus age group, besides constantly pursuing with Centre for more vaccine doses for its population of above 45 years.