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Srinagar Man, Dead for 60 Years, ‘Gets’ Both Shots of COVID-19 Vaccine

Jammu: The Union government’s CoWIN website for vaccination has registered a Kashmir man, whose family said he died six decades ago, as one who has received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Thirty-three-year-old Mudasir Siddiq from the Kohlipora area of Khanyar in Srinagar city said he was surprised to find the profile of his grandfather Ali Mohammad Bhat suddenly showing up on the CoWIN website. Siddiq said his dead grandfather’s profile flashes the green “vaccinated” status.

“I tested positive for COVID-19 a month ago so I registered to receive my first dose only recently,” reported The Wire qouting Siddi. “I also persuaded the rest of my family members to get their shots. They all got themselves registered through my number. All our respective status reports feature on the same page.”

To this correspondent, Siddiq demonstrated the above by logging into the CoWIN website, filling in his phone number, typing a one-time password and accessing his page. He scrolled down the page, revealing the names of family members who were registered under his number. Among them were his grandfather.

“I am surprised as to how my grandfather’s name made its way into the list. He passed away 60 years ago. I have never seen him. Even my father has little knowledge of exactly how and when my grandfather died,” he said.

Siddiq’s father did not meet any officials to correct this because, he said, they felt that “it doesn’t affect [them] adversely.”

Siddiq also pointed out that while the reference ID and secret code assigned to his dead grandfather were unique, his date of birth and PAN card number were the same as his father’s.

“Even if it’s a technical error, how does the website know the name of my grandfather? We did not even register him. And why is his PAN number the same as that of my father’s?” Siddiq asked.

Dr Mushtaq Rather, director of health services in Kashmir who said that he was busy before disconnecting the call and asking that he be messaged instead. This report will be updated as and when he responds.

Over 51 lakh vaccine doses have been administered in J&K so far, according to official count. Close to 43 lakh individuals have received their first jabs while well over 8 lakh individuals got their both doses in the UT.

There are 864 vaccination sites across the UT, out of which 858 are owned by the government and only six are privately operating.

Only eight of 20 districts in J&K have achieved 100% vaccination for people aged above 45 years. At 74%, Srinagar is among the worse performers alongside Kupwara (65.03%)

The Valley also witnessed a spate of confrontations over administering vaccines with healthcare workers often facing the wrath of residents who refuse to take shots. The administration in J&K has been taking to social media, urging people to overcome vaccine hesitancy.

 

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