Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday, launched the second phase of COVID-19 vaccination drive for Frontline Workers with the Punjab Police Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab Dinkar Gupta volunteering to be the first one among the Punjab Police to get the jab at Punjab Police Headquarters here. Additional Chief Secretary (ACS Home) Punjab Anurag Agarwal also got vaccinated at the same session, alongwith the top brass of the Punjab Police.
Under the second phase of the ongoing vaccination drive in Punjab, around 82789 Punjab Police personnel are supposed to be inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine across the state.
Prior to launch of the vaccination drive, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh was given the Guard of Honour, after which he laid a wreath at Punjab Police Martyrs’ Memorial in the foyer of Punjab Police Headquarters to pay homage to 1800 police personnel of different ranks, who laid down their lives during fight against terrorism.
Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, while lauding the efforts of the Punjab Police said that the entire force had worked day and night on the frontlines when the COVID-19 was at its peak in Punjab and rest of the country. Besides maintaining Law and Order, the Police also ensured home delivery of food, medicines and other essentials, during the curfew spanning over two months from March 22, 2020 and later all through the worst phase of COVID pandemic in Punjab.
He said that a total of 6153 police personnel were diagnosed positive for COVID-19 out of which 6086 have successfully recovered while 15 Punjab Police cops are presently COVID-19 positive and are undergoing the treatment.
Unfortunately, 52 Punjab Police personnel, including one gazetted officer, 33 non-gazetted officers, nine other ranks, six Punjab Home Guard jawans from the Punjab Police lost their lives to COVID-19, added the Chief Minister.
Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said that though no amount of money could compensate the loss, the Punjab Government had always stood behind the families of persons died due to COVID-19. He expressed satisfaction that an ex-gratia amount of Rs 50 lakhs had already disbursed to all the eligible families of Punjab Police personnel who had died of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, since Punjab Police personnel interact with the people of the State on a 24/7 basis, DGP Dinkar Gupta said that it was important for the entire Punjab Police force to come forward and get themselves vaccinated to protect themselves as well as the citizens of Punjab from the Covid pandemic.
On the occasion, Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu and Principal Secretary Health and Family Welfare Hussan Lal among other prominent officers were present.