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Brothers offer skewers for shots at steakhouse after dad hospitalized with Covid

Two brothers were inspired to immunize hundreds of people from their Punjabi grill after their father was admitted to hospital with coronavirus.

Rav and Raj Chopra, who are also pharmacists, vaccinated dozens of people a day at their restaurant, V’s Punjabi Grill, in Gravesend, Kent, where uptake has been relatively low.

The men set up the clinic from a marquee attached to the restaurant on January 10 this year, after their father Jagtar Chopra, 74, fell seriously ill with the coronavirus in December 2020.

Rav Chopra, vaccinating a client under a marquee with his brother Raj

Speaking at the grill, Raj, 43, told the PA news agency: “From a personal perspective it was very debilitating to see dad like this. He put everyone’s emotions on the line .

“Although we do what we do on a daily basis, to see it touch so close to our hearts, it was a very difficult pill – pardon the pun – to take.

“However, every cloud has a silver lining and that has inspired us to really focus on the work that we do, to help the community and to help fellow citizens of our hometown and to really try to protect as many people as possible.”

Mr Chopra senior, who has made a full recovery, added: ‘I thought I wasn’t going to make it, it was so bad.

“I was in the hospital for about six nights and I was really, really sick, but thanks to all the doctors, all the staff, I survived.”

Rav Chopra urged the local people to “come down, take your shots” to “protect everyone in society”.

Local MP Adam Holloway visited the restaurant and praised the brothers for improving vaccination in the area.

The Tory MP for Gravesham told PA: ‘The layout here has been quite patchy.

“We had an incredible effort from the different groups of GPs at the start. But what’s great about it is that these guys are ready to ramp up (the rollout).

“We must remember that as we come out, God willing, of the pandemic and into an endemic phase, this current variant is not the last that we are going to have.

“So these guys are showing real entrepreneurial spirit in healthcare by operating out of the back of a restaurant in the middle of Gravesend, it’s a fabulous thing.”

(left to right) Clifford Rodrigues, 36, Rav Chopra, 44 (wearing the vest), Raj Chopra, 43, and Jagtar Chopra, 74.  Two brothers were inspired to immunize hundreds of people in their Punjabi grill after their father was admitted.  in hospital with Covid

(left to right) Clifford Rodrigues, 36, Rav Chopra, 44 (wearing the vest), Raj Chopra, 43, and Jagtar Chopra, 74. Two brothers were inspired to immunize hundreds of people in their Punjabi grill after their father was admitted. in hospital with Covid

The brothers’ kebab shop is one of hundreds of venues that are part of the NHS vaccination programme, and other locations have included sports stadiums, shopping malls and Heaven nightclub in London.

Amid efforts to ensure everyone has access to a vaccine, a person with additional learning needs received their shot at home in a hot tub, according to the deputy director of the NHS Covid vaccination program , Dr Nikki Kanani.

Dr Kanani, who is also a GP, said on Saturday: “If you haven’t been vaccinated yet, it’s not too late. There is always a vaccine available for you with your name on it.

“He’s there for you and no one will judge you if you decided earlier to show up for your first shot. Please move forward.

‘Jab taxis’ take people to vaccination appointments in Birmingham and Manchester, where attendance has been relatively low, while ‘push bus’ services operate in Surrey and Somerset, said the NHS England.

NHS England said more than 115 million doses of Covid vaccines have been administered across the country, including 31 million boosters.

On Friday, the UK Health Safety Agency (UKHSA) said it had designated a “sub-line” of the Omicron variant as a “variant under investigation”, meaning it may be monitored.

He said the proportion of cases of this subvariant is low, with 426 confirmed, the oldest dating back to December 6, and the original variant is dominant in the UK.

The latest government figures show 76,807 new cases of Covid-19 were reported in the UK on Saturday, while a further 297 people died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19.

A total of 52,203,675 first doses of Covid-19 vaccine had been delivered in the UK by January 21, according to government figures, along with 48,115,948 second doses and a combined total of 36,821,284 booster and third doses.

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