Bengaluru civic body Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) Chief Commissioner, Gaurav Gupta on Tuesday clarified that there is no “special category” vaccination drive for anyone, including leaders of the ruling BJP in the city.
His statement came amid various social media platforms abuzz with reports about BJP MLAs were using their influence to divert Covid vaccines and inoculate their supporters in various constituencies in Bengaluru.
Gupta said that no such incidents that had come to his notice yet.
“Our officers take everyone into confidence and organise anti-Covid vaccination drives. The drives like this need support from everyone at the local level. We are taking help from NGOs in slums to create awareness. There are several corporates coming forward to administer vaccinations under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Such being the case, it is not right to cast aspersions on the ongoing drive itself. There is always room to correct oneself if any mistakes are happening,” he said in response to a question.
Meanwhile local news channels and social media platforms were claiming that the vaccination drive on May 31 at the Bhuvaneshwari Nagar Public Health Centre was cancelled, allegedly at the behest of local BJP MLA S. Raghu, despite around 300 persons being given tokens early in the morning, and instead, held at the Om Shakti Kalyana Mantapa run by the MLA, with a banner claiming a free vaccination drive was being done by MLA Raghu.
However, only his party cadres and their friends and families got the jab there, alleged local residents.
Raghu, the MLA from C.V. Raman Nagar constituency, is also brother-in-law of influential BJP leader and Forest and Ecology Minister, Aravind Limbavali, who represents the adjacent Mahadevapura Assembly segment,
After an uncontrollable surge in Covid cases in the state in early May, Limbavali was given an additional responsibility of Covid-19 war room and management of treatment to patients in proper time.
Despite repeated attempts, Raghu could not be reached for a comment. It was only on Saturday that BJP’s Basavanagudi MLA L.A. Ravi Subramanya who is the uncle of Bengaluru South MP, L. S. Tejasvi Surya, was embroiled in a similar controversy where he was alleged to have blocked vaccines.