Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday urged healthcare workers to conduct door-to-door vaccination in places where the residents are not fully inoculated against the coronavirus.

He also advised districts that have low Covid-19 vaccination rates to find innovative methods to boost the immunisation drive.

The prime minister made the statement at a review meeting with the officials of over 40 districts where less than 50% of the adult population has received one shot of the coronavirus vaccine or have very low second-dose vaccination coverage. The 40 districts are spread across Jharkhand, Manipur, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Maharashtra and Meghalaya, among other states.

At the meeting, officials informed Modi about the problems they have faced in their districts that had led to low vaccination coverage. These included rumours resulting in vaccine hesitancy and challenges due to difficult terrain and prevailing weather conditions in recent months, a statement from the prime minister’s office said.

The prime minister asked the officials to develop micro strategies, learning from their experience. He suggested forming a team of 20-25 people for developing these strategies.

On door-to-door vaccination, the prime minister said to focus equally on people who are unvaccinated as well as those who have not received the second dose.

“You will have to contact those people who have not taken the second dose despite the stipulated time on a priority basis...ignoring this has created problems for many countries in the world,” he cautioned.

He praised healthcare workers and administration officials for their contribution to the country’s immunisation drive but also warned against laxity.

“[The] progress made so far is due to your hardwork,” he said, according to ANI. “Every member of administration, ASHA workers worked a lot, walked for miles and took vaccination to remote locations. But if we become lax after 1 billion [vaccine doses], a new crisis can come.”

He also warned against rumours on vaccination.

“The solution to this is making people aware,” Modi said. “You [district officials] can seek help of local religious leaders [to combat rumours]. Make their small videos and ensure that they reach every household.”

The prime minister said that he had earlier met many religious leaders and sought their help to tackle rumours against vaccination.

India has so far administered 1,07,50,59,421 Covid-19 vaccine doses, according to data on CoWIN portal. As many as 33,65,57,471 beneficiaries have received both doses.

Meanwhile, India on Wednesday registered 11,903 new coronavirus cases, pushing the overall tally of infections to 3,43,08,140 since the pandemic began in January last year. The number of new cases was 14.19% higher than Tuesday’s count of 10,423.

India’s toll rose to 4,59,191 as it recorded 311 more deaths.