The Dispatch Videos The Newsfeed

COVID: 121-year-old leads fight, gets second dose of vaccine  

Already an inspiration for generations of younger people due to the good health she maintains, Dholi Devi is now leading the war against the pandemic in her area. She has single-handedly inspired an entire village to make the Covid vaccination drive a huge success, said health officials.

JAMMU: At 121, Dholi Devi is perhaps the oldest person in J&K to have completed two doses of vaccination against coronavirus. On Wednesday, as the centenarian got her second jab at her residence in the remote Gar Katiyas village in Udhampur district, the thickly forested hills around her village echoed her determination.

Already an inspiration for generations of younger people due to the good health she maintains, Dholi Devi is now leading the war against the pandemic in her area. She has single-handedly inspired an entire village to make the Covid vaccination drive a huge success, said health officials.

In recognition of her contribution, Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Y K Joshi had visited her house on May 21 after Dholi Devi received her first jab on May 17. “In an environment wherein even educated people in urban areas are often hesitant to take the vaccine, the 121-year-old woman, by taking the lead in motivating an entire village, has been able to transform the mindset of the local population,” he said.

“Dholi Devi represents the voice of hope amid the pandemic gloom. Encouraged by her, the entire village has now voluntarily come forward for inoculation,” Lt Gen Joshi added.

The centenarian faced no health issues — not even a fever — after getting vaccinated, said her kin.

Lauding Dholi Devi’s courage and health consciousness, Union minister Jatinder Singh uploaded a video showing health staffers visiting her to administer the second dose. “121-year-old Dholi Devi from Dudu panchayat testifies that age is just a number,” he wrote.

Besides Dholi Devi, 90-year-old Thakri Devi from Udhampur’s Kashira panchayat has also been spreading awareness among people and encouraging them to get inoculated. Thakri Devi had tested positive for Covid-19 during the first wave and survived. After recovering, she got herself vaccinated on May 2 and now inspires others to follow suit.