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Village heads should play a big role in spreading vaccination awareness: Minister Letpao

Letpao also urged the village chieftains of the remote areas of the state not to allow and agree on such a ‘mutual arrangement’ of rendering services by ‘substitute’ employees, especially in schools and health centres.

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Imphal: Minister of WR and YAS, Letpao Haokip conducted a two-day tour of the remote areas of Khengjoi sub-division of Chandel district to inspect and supervise the mass vaccination and awareness programs of COVID-19.

He opined that village chieftains have a huge role to play in raising awareness to the hilly villagers regarding the vaccination, and also for streamlining the government institutions in remote hill areas.

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On Sunday, a mass vaccination cum awareness drive was held at Khangbarol village. DC Chandel M Rajkumar, SP Chandel Shri L Deben Singh, SDO Khengjoi L Herojit, special guest Dr Jamlal, village chiefs and student and civil bodies representatives also took part in the program.

During the programme, Minister Letpao said that getting oneself vaccinated is the most effective way to remain COVID-free as of now. One should not doubt the benefits of this vaccine and should not believe in misinformation and rumours that discouraged vaccination, he added. He further appreciated the full-hearted initiative of the District Administration, Chandel for such a mass drive that targets 100% vaccination of the district. It may be mentioned that the minister is the Chairman of the District Review Committee for fighting COVID pandemic.

The minister also expressed that it is high time that all the government offices and institutions in hill areas be streamlined as irresponsible and unprofessional government employees have been defying their duties and have depended on hired substitutes. This trend had failed to serve the actual purpose of setting up such offices, thereby affecting the efficiency of administration and delivering services.

Letpao also urged the village chieftains of the remote areas of the state not to allow and agree on such a ‘mutual arrangement’ of rendering services by ‘substitute’ employees, especially in schools and health centres.

Health and education are the most basic spheres of society and should not be compromised, he said and added that schools and PHCs/PHSCs should work with full staff always. The minister also appealed, as always, to the hill people not to resort to the cultivation of poppy cultivation, and should find a viable alternative livelihood means. Many schemes of different departments, especially the Horticulture and Soil Conservation-related schemes are there, and he assured that he will ensure availing of such benefits to the farmers.

Later on, Minister Letpao Haokip, who is also the local MLA of the area toured, distributed rice bags to all the households of the village. The rice bags are procured by funds from the side of the local MLA combined with the sharing availed under the PMKY scheme.

Chandel DC, Rajkumar appealed to the villagers to get vaccinated and not to doubt its effectiveness, citing the personal experiences he had in his family regarding the COVID-19 and being vaccinated.

SDO L Herojit expressed his gratitude to the Minister for taking up all the odds and his genuine interest in fighting the pandemic and for his relentless efforts of convincing the villagers to get vaccinated.

Earlier on Saturday afternoon, Letpao also visited Joldam villages and urged the locals to get vaccinated. SDO Khengjoi and Dr Jamlal responded to queries and cleared the doubts of the villages regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.

It may be vaccinated that the mass vaccination drive of the Khengjoi sub-division is being carried out by 4 teams led by the SDO under the leadership of the DC, and will cover all the nook and corners of the sub-division over a span of 8 days.

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