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As part of efforts to inoculate every eligible person in Tamil Nadu’s Nilgiris district, authorities have made it compulsory for those wanting to buy liquor from state-run TASMAC outlets to be fully vaccinated against coronavirus. Customers will have to produce their vaccination certificates showing they have taken both doses of the Covid vaccine, they said. This move is part of a drive to vaccinate all residents, District Collector Innocent Divya said Thursday.

Stating that almost 97% of the district’s population has been administered the vaccine doses, she said that the administration wants all citizens to take the second jab and came up with the idea to reach the target.

Besides the vaccination certificates, customers will also have to submit their Aadhaar cards to purchase liquor from the TASMAC outlets.

On the other hand, there has been a lot of reluctance when it came to taking the coronavirus vaccine in many parts of India, most of them due to a lack of awareness and understanding of the virus. A similar scenario was seen among the villagers of Ulundurpet in Kallakurichi district in Tamil Nadu where the residents were skeptical of taking the coronavirus vaccine. Sensing the lack of awareness and reluctance among the people of his village, R Thambidurai, a social activist hailing from Ulundurpet itself, stepped up to raise awareness among his villagers to know the importance of the Covid jab. An idea came to Thambidurai and he decided to start a free-gift scheme for all the people who get vaccine shots in his village of M Kunnathur.

Thambidurai said he spent the money on the gifts from his own pocket. Amid the surge of Covid-19 second wave, a vaccination drive was flagged off on Sunday near the village but it didn’t gain momentum initially because of primarily lack of awareness in people. Without adequate guidance, villagers showed no interest in getting vaccinated. It was then that Thambidurai, a studio photographer and activist from the village, decided to reward his villagers who take the jab. Following this, he started giving away gift items such as utensils to those who were getting vaccinated, which led to more and more people approaching the camp to get jabbed. Eventually, a large number of villagers eagerly came up to get their vaccine shots and received gift items from the social activist. And thus on the second day, an overwhelming number of 94 people got vaccinated.

(With PTI Inputs)

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