Coronavirus Vaccine Update: COVID-19 vaccine will be free-of-cost for each and every person in Kerala, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Saturday, becoming the fourth state to announce the free rollout after Assam, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh. Also Read - India's Vaccine Drive From Tomorrow: Health Ministry Lays Guidelines, Precautions | Check Details Here

“No one will be charged for the vaccine. This is the stand of the government,” Vijayan told reporters at Kannur. Also Read - Schools in Himachal Pradesh to Reopen From Feb 1, Face Mask Must For Students | Guidelines Here  

The announcement comes on a day when Kerala recorded 5,949 COVID-19 cases and 32 deaths, taking the state’s caseload to 6.64 lakh and the toll to 2,594. Meanwhile, the active cases stood at 60,029 and 5,268 were declared as recovered from the infection. Also Read - IRCTC Latest News: No Extra Fare Charged From Passengers Despite COVID-19, Says Railways

The Kerala CM also said the quantity of the vaccine that would be allotted to the state by the Centre was not yet known.

“The fact is that the number of COVID-19 cases are decreasing, which is a matter of relief. However, it needs to be seen if the local body polls, two phases of which are over, would contribute to an increase in cases. That will be known only in the days to come,” he said.

If the cases do not increase, this trend (of cases declining) will continue, the chief minister added.

Notably, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has demanded free vaccination against COVID-19 for all citizens across the country, not just in a few states.

The Centre on Tuesday noted that three COVID-19 vaccines – developed by Bharat Biotech, Serum Institute of India and Pfizer respectively – among five vaccine candidates that were under different phases of clinical trials, are under active consideration of India’s drug regulator and there is hope that early licensure is possible for all or any of them.

Dr Vinod Paul, a member of Niti Aayog who heads the panel advising the Prime Minister on the country’s efforts to produce and roll-out the COVID-19 vaccine, said that a decision regarding the these three firms will be released in the next few days.

(With PTI inputs)