'Sonia Ji, Raebareli No longer Your Circle of relatives?': Ministers Tackle Congress After Document on Low Vaccination

Union Ministers Hardeep Singh Puri, Anurag Thakur, Smriti Irani, and Dr Jitendra Singh on Saturday hit out at Congress chief Sonia Gandhi for the low Covid-19 vaccination rate in her Lok Sabha constituency Raebareli, in Uttar Pradesh.

Reacting to News18’s report on Raebareli being the district with the lowest vaccination rate as per population in Uttar Pradesh, Union Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur said in a tweet: “Smt Sonia Gandhi ji, are the people of Raebareli not like your own family? Why did you secretly get vaccinated; propagate vaccine hesitancy, while ignoring Raebareli?”

Union Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri, sharing the report, remarked that people looked up to their elected representatives for hope and inspiration. “While it is reassuring that Smt Sonia Gandhi has received both doses of vaccine she should now appeal to people of Rae Bareilly to get vaccinated as well. With just 4.6% people jabbed it needs to do better,” he said.

Union Cabinet Minister for Textiles and Women & Child Development Smriti Irani also hit out at the Congress chief on Twitter. “The misinformation spread by Sonia’s party and her allies about the Covid vaccine has hurt the security of the people in her own parliamentary constituency. In fact, she never considered the voters as her own, just used them for political gain,” she said.

Union Minister of State Dr Jitendra Singh also shared the report on Twitter.

Against a projected population of almost 39 lakh, only 2.12 lakh jabs have been given in Raebareli. Considering that 1.81 lakh of them are first doses, only about 4.6% of the district’s population has been inoculated so far, the report states.

This is almost half of UP’s average vaccination coverage of about nine per cent of the population, so far. Only 32,263 people have received the second jab in Raebareli; which shows that less than one per cent of the town’s population is fully vaccinated so far.

Vaccine Hesitancy

The report states that vaccine hesitancy is amid the reasons for the low inoculation rates in the district. “Most Yadavs and Muslims in my village said they would not take the jabs after Akhilesh Yadav said earlier that he would not take the vaccine,” resident Virendra Singh told News18.

Rae Bareli MP Sonia Gandhi has taken both doses of the vaccine, Congress said recently, but locals here seem unaware of the same. “We did not see her picture of taking the vaccine. Gandhi can issue an appeal to people of Raebareli to take jabs. Maybe it helps,” a student Nitin Mohan said.

Samajwadi Party Akhilesh Yadav has courted controversy in the past by saying that “he would not take BJP’s vaccine”.

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