Covid-19 crisis: Five states with the slowest vaccination rates in the country

The government’s efforts to ramp up administration of vaccines has not yet led to a massive jump in inoculations
Last Updated 11 June 2021, 12:06 IST

The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic is on the wane, but fresh cases still hover just below the peak of the first wave. Policymakers are now turning their attention to preventing a possible third wave, with vaccinations being the armour of choice.

The government’s efforts to ramp up administration of vaccines has not yet led to a massive jump in inoculations, as only about 14.7 per cent have received even a single jab; a measly 3.5 per cent of India’s large population is fully protected against the deadly infection.

The distribution of vaccines has also heavily leaned towards the older segment of the population, with nearly three-fourths of vaccines received by those above 45 years of age.

Here are the five states that have registered the slowest rate of vaccinations so far:

Uttar Pradesh

Uttar Pradesh shares the bottom run for the slowest pace of vaccination, being the only state other than Bihar to have a vaccination rate of less than 8 per cent. However, in terms of total vaccinations, the state has administered the second-highest number of doses, behind only Maharashtra. The poor run-rate can be attributed to the large population of the state, implying that it may require a larger share of vaccines in times to come.

Active cases in the state had fallen to 12,243 by Thursday, while the cumulative test positivity ratio had dropped to 1 per cent. Of the people who have received at least one vaccine dose, 31.4 per cent are in the 18-44 age group.


The scenario in Bihar is similar to Uttar Pradesh. However, despite having the third highest population in the country, the state is at eighth place in terms of the number of people vaccinated. This could be a cause of concern if the vaccination rate is not ramped up from the current 8 per cent.

Bihar’s active caseload is nearly half that of Uttar Pradesh and its positivity rate is even lower. However, the state has the lowest percentage of people covered under two doses.

Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu has fared the worst among the southern states by far, having vaccinated only 10.7 per cent of its population, though a bigger population does play a role. However, Andhra Pradesh with a comparable population has administered about 7 lakh more doses.

Despite having about a third of Uttar Pradesh’s population, Tamil Nadu has roughly 15 times the number of active cases and saw the biggest rise in daily cases on Thursday with 16,813 cases.


The northeastern state has the smallest population on this list and has lagged its peers with a vaccination rate of a shade under 11 per cent. The vaccination drive is also heavily skewed towards the 45-and-over category, with nearly 70 per cent of vaccines going to the group.

Assam also has an alarmingly high caseload of more than 47,000, with the cumulative positivity rate touching 3.2 per cent in the state.


While Jharkhand has only about a sixth of the population of Uttar Pradesh, the state has fallen short in its vaccination drive, having administered at least one dose to just close to 11 per cent of its population and a second dose to just over 2 per cent.

The state also has one of the lowest active caseloads among major states at about 4,515.

(Published 11 June 2021, 12:06 IST)

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