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COVID vaccines

India to provide free COVID jabs to all 940m adults, Modi says

New Delhi takes over vaccine procurement as ferocious second wave begins to ebb

A painting of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Mumbai touts the country's coronavirus vaccination program.   © Reuters

NEW DELHI -- All Indian citizens above 18 years of age -- about 940 million people -- will be vaccinated against coronavirus for no cost starting June 21, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Monday as the country fights a ferocious second wave of the pandemic.

"The federal government will provide vaccines to all countrymen for free of charge," Modi said in an address to the nation, adding his government is also taking over all state-level procurement of jabs. Until now, free vaccines have been available to people older than 45.

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