The entire world has borne witness to the COVID-19 Novel Corona Virus Pandemic, for over 9 months now! This deadly Virus has wreaked havoc and claimed hundreds of thousands of lives and infected thousands of lakhs of people across the globe! Though Russia has announced the registration of 2 vaccines for COVID, people from the medical fraternity have not yet accepted it unanimously, as the vaccines have not yet gone through the extensive Phase 3 Clinical trials! There are about 12-15 other vaccine candidates which are in the most advanced level of testing and are expected to soon move into the production stage! In such a situation, governments of all countries as well as the individual state governments of India have begun chalking out distribution plans for the COVID vaccine.

Earlier, there was some sensational news when the BJP announced as part of its election manifesto for Bihar, free distribution of the COVID vaccine in the state, if it won the upcoming elections. This news caused quite a few ripples across the country. Now, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami has announced that when the COVID vaccine is ready, the TN government plans to distribute it to everybody in the state, free of cost! This announcement was made by the CM when he was in Pudukottai, while holding a review meeting with officials at the Collector Office. He had also been discussing the COVID-19 preventive measures being taken as well as developmental projects and also announced that a government dental college and hospital would soon be opened in the Pudukottai district!

The Tamil Nadu state assembly polls are set to happen soon and according to reports, the COVID vaccine would go into mass production and be available for widespread commercial use, only after the elections. It remains to be seen if this promise for free COVID-19 vaccine in TN would become part of the election manifesto of any party. Responding to this announcement by the TN CM, DMK leader Stalin questioned the notions behind the announcement and asked if the CM was using this statement as a leverage when it is the natural duty of the government to provide the vaccine to all the people, for free! The Bihar poll manifesto announced by Nirmala Sitharaman for the BJP, also came in for a lot of flak with many national parties questioning as to whether the Central Government would not provide free vaccine to states not ruled by the BJP. Let's hope the vaccine gets ready for public use soon and that all the people unequivocally get it for free!