Milma has urged the Kerala Government to take urgent steps to administer Covid-19 vaccine on a priority basis to its over 3000 employees across the state, engaged in procurement and processing of milk, a high risk essential service that ensures uninterrupted supply of milk to millions of households daily.
In separate letters to the State Dairy Development Minister Adv K Raju and Health and Family Welfare Minister K K Shailaja, Milma Chairman P A Balan Master appealed to them to make immediate arrangements for the vaccination of the employees of the co-operative diary major working in its apex units and the three regional unions.
Considering the seriousness of the situation, the regional unions of Milma will bear the entire expense of the vaccination programme for its workforce, Milma Chairman P A Balan Master said in his appeal to the ministers.
”The employees of Milma and its three regional unions are engaged in procuring over 14 lakh litres of milk per day from over 3500 primary dairy co-operatives in the length and breadth of Kerala,” he said.
“Right from the outbreak of the pandemic, they have been carrying out their duties under high risk, without causing any disruption to the milk supply,” he said.
“Considering the importance of the task entrusted with Milma, the Government had declared it as an essential service. Now that the second wave of the pandemic has hit hard, it is crucial to take urgent steps to organise the vaccination programme for the workers in this vital sector on a priority basis,” Balan Master said.
The employees of Milma and its regional unions, who are in the 18-58 age group, are located in as many as 20 units around the state. Many of them work in different shifts in facilities that function round-the-clock. Considering this, it would be impractical to organise the vaccination programme for them in a centralised manner.
In view of this, the authorities concerned should be instructed to make arrangements for organising the vaccination programme in each unit of the co-operative network, the Milma Chairman added.