No move to inoculate entire country with COVID-19 vaccine: Centre

New Delhi: There was never any talk of inoculating the whole population of the country with COVID-19 vaccine, the Centre said on Tuesday said.

Responding to a question at a press briefing, ICMR Director General Balram Bhargava said the purpose of the COVID vaccine drive would be to break the chain of viral transmission.

"Our purpose is to break the chain of virus transmission. If we are able to vaccinate a critical mass of people and break the chain of transmission, then we may not have to vaccinate the entire population," he said.

"The role of masks is also vitally important and that will continue even after the vaccination. Because we are starting with a small group of population at a time and therefore masks will be protective and continue to be used so as to help in breaking the chain of viral transmission," Bhargava said.

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said there was never a talk about inoculating the whole population of the country with COVID-19 vaccine.

"I just want to make this clear that the government has never spoken about vaccinating the entire country. It's important that we discuss such scientific issues, based on factual information only and then analyse it," said Bhushan.