UP's handling of the second wave of COVID-19 has been unparalleled: Prime Minister
The praise comes amidst dissent within the BJP's UP ranks over Adityanath's management of the pandemic, with the party's own leaders going public with their complaints.
During a visit to his constituency of Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised Uttar Pradesh government's handling of the second wave of COVID-19 cases "unparalleled"
"UP stood up and battled the virus efficiently, it is India's most populous state but the manner in which Uttar Pradesh handled and controlled the pandemic is worthy of praise. UP's handling of the second wave of COVID-19 has been unparalleled," the Prime Minister said.
The statement comes in the aftermath of complete collapse of health care services in the state. UP recorded over 30,000 new cases daily at the peak of the second wave, up from a record single-day high of 7,016 cases in the first. There were no beds in hospitals, and people were seen running for oxygen cylinders. Bodies of suspected Covid patients were found floating on the Ganga, and buried along its banks, in May and June.
Further, expressing his admiration for healthcare and frontline workers of the state, the Prime Minister also hailed UP for "the maximum number of vaccinations in the country". Data from the centre's CoWIN platform says UP had administered 3.89 crore doses so far.
"A free vaccine for all is the aim of the government and it is being done," the PM said.
A report by Oxford Economics last month suggested that unlike other (smaller) states, UP has yet to reach a "safe level" - that is, at least 30 per cent of the population has received both doses.
The praise comes amidst dissent within the BJP's UP ranks over Adityanath's management of the pandemic, with the party's own leaders going public with their complaints. The biggest among these was Lok Sabha MP Santosh Gangwar, who complained about the situation in UP's Bareilly. Mr Gangwar was removed as Labour Minister in this month's cabinet reshuffle.
Moreover, a teachers' body has claimed that 90 per cent of over 1,600 who had died since the first week of April due to COVID-19 were on poll duties. The state has insisted that only three deaths are linked to the virus.