NEW DELHI: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Friday hit back at Rahul Gandhi for raising questions over the COVID-19 vaccine availability in the country, saying the Congress is in need of a leadership haul.
Vardhan also said that there is no vaccine for the virus of arrogance and ignorance.
"Just yesterday, I put out facts on vaccine availability for the month of July. What is @RahulGandhi Ji's problem ?Does he not read ? Does he not understand ? There is no vaccine for the virus of arrogance and ignorance !! @INCIndia must think of a leadership overhaul !," Vardhan tweeted.
Earlier in the day, Gandhi had said in a tweet in Hindi that July has come but vaccines have not.
Vardhan on Thursday said that various leaders were making "irresponsible statements" about the COVID-19 vaccination drive and requested them to desist from the "shameless urge to play politics" in the midst of a pandemic.
Taking to Twitter, he urged these leaders to spend "more energy in planning and not in creating panic".
"I'm seeing irresponsible statements from various leaders regarding the largest vaccination drive.
Stating facts so that people can judge intentions of these leaders.
"After GoI (Government of India) provided 75 per cent of vaccines available for free, vaccination speed picked up and 11. 50 crore doses were given in June," Vardhan said in a tweet.
He further said that states have already been informed in advance about vaccine supplies for July.
"States have already been informed in advance about #COVID19Vaccine supplies for July. This info was shared with states 15 days prior, along with details about day wise supply. total of 12 crore doses shall be made available in July. Pvt hospital supply will be over and above this," he had said in an another tweet.
He said if there are issues in states, it shows that they need to plan their vaccination drives better.
"Intra-state planning and logistics are the responsibility of the states," he said.
"If these leaders are aware of these facts and are still making such statements, I consider it most unfortunate. If they don't know, they need to focus on governance. Will again request state leaders to spend more energies in planning and not in creating panic," he said in another tweet.
According to Health Ministry's inoculation data published at 7 am on Friday the cumulative COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 34 crore under the Nationwide Vaccination Drive.