Tamil Nadu Health Minister's office on May 1 announced that vaccination centres will function as usual, in spite of the total lockdown imposed by the government across the state on Sundays to curb the rapid rise of COVID-19. On Sunday, May 2, the Tamil Nadu Health Department declared that all vaccine centres in the state would remain open and continue to function as usual. It must be noted that after the government announced the first Sunday lockdown on April 25, the number of people who ventured out to get themselves vaccinated against the Coronavirus took a sharp dip, due to the strict curbs in place. Vaccine crunch in Tamil Nadu According to a report in Puthiya Thalaimurai, a Tamil News portal, Director of Public Health and Preventive Medicine Dr Selvavinayagam said all eligible candidates above 45 years of age who want to get vaccinated can step out on Sundays to go to the vaccination centres for the inoculation. On April 25, only 10,553 persons were vaccinated as opposed to 1,19,237 persons on April 24. Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu government is yet to start phase 3 of the inoculation drive for all people aged between 18-44 as directed by the Union government, owing to lack of vaccine stock. The State health secretary has recently in a press conference stated that Tamil Nadu has ordered 1.5 crore doses of the vaccines and is yet to receive them. Given the vaccine shortage, many centres have started giving priority to those whose second doses of the vaccine against the coronavirus are pending as opposed to those who need to be administered the first jab. Tamil Nadu's vaccine shortage is similar to that of many other states in the country and comes at a time when COVID-19 second wave has overwhelmed and in many places maxed out the public health system. There appears to be a desperate need for oxygen cylinders, ICU and ventilator beds. To address the situation, the state government has started a Unified Command Centre at the National Health Mission office where it will look over bed allocation for the critically ill and oxygen-dependent patients including those in private hospitals, The UCC can be reached by phone at 104 or @104GoTN on Twitter and hashtag #BedsForTN . Coronavirus cases in India: Close to 20,000 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Tamil Nadu on Saturday, May 1, with the total cases amounting to 11,86,344 according to government reports. the Health Department. In the last 24 hours, 147 persons died — 92 at government health facilities and 55 at private hospitals — taking the toll to 14,193. As many as 17,164 persons were discharged after treatment. Tamil Nadu With exit polls predicting a landslide DMK victory, the poll results for the all-important 234-seat Tamil Nadu State Assembly will be revealed on May 2. DMK, currently at the time of this publication is leading in 128 seats while the incumbent AIADMK is leading in 89 seats currently, as per initial trends.