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Dhaka Tribune

DGHS chief: Tough action if directorate staffers found involved in selling Covid vaccine

Several days ago, police seized Moderna vaccine doses from a pharmacy in Dhaka

Update : 22 Aug 2021, 04:53 PM

The chief of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) has warned of strict consequences if any employee of the directorate is found involved in selling Covid-19 vaccines to outsiders.

Director General Dr Abul Bashar Mohammad Khurshid Alam made the remarks on Sunday while talking to reporters during a visit to the National Institute of Neuroscience and Hospital in Dhaka.

His warning came after police arrested a man with Moderna vaccine doses in the capital several days ago.

“The police are already investigating the allegations against the man. And the DGHS has also opened a separate inquiry,” he said.

Alam added that disciplinary action will be taken if anyone from DGHS was found involved.

Meanwhile, DGHS Additional Director General Dr Meerjady Sabrina Flora said that the number of booths will be increased at the vaccination centres to clear out the backlog of people waiting for their shots.

Currently more than 10 million people are waiting to receive Covid-19 jabs after completing the registration process. 

She said her department is not lowering the guard against Covid-19 spread as the daily positivity rate is still over 16%. 

On August 18, police arrested Bijoy Krishna Talukder, claiming to be a paramedic, from a pharmacy in Dhaka’s Dakkhinkhan with two vials (10 doses in each vial) of the Moderna vaccine.

Later, they also found 21 vials that had already been used to illegally vaccinate people.

The government has been administering the Covid-19 vaccines for free. The authorities had received the Moderna vaccine doses under the Covax program.

How Talukder came to be in possession of the vaccines remains unknown but investigators suspect that he would not have been able to get his hands on them without the involvement of one or several DGHS staffers.

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