Gangtok, April 11(IPR): On the occasion of Tika Utsav (Vaccination Festival), Hon’ble Chief Minister Shri Prem Singh Tamang received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at STNM Hospital, Sochyagang, today. The spouse of Hon’ble Chief Minister Smt. Krishna Kumari Rai, Hon’ble Minister for Rural Development Department Shri Sonam Lama, Secretary to HCM Shri S.D.Dhakal and other officials also received the COVID-19 vaccine. In his brief address to the media, the Chief Minister appealed to the masses who are in the age group of 45 years and above to come forward and participate in the Tika Utsav. In the same manner, he also urged everyone to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 appropriate behavior which includes frequent hand washing, wearing of a mask, follow physical distancing to curb the transmission of the virus. The Chief Minister also extended gratitude to the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for providing the COVID -19 vaccine free of cost and also stressed on ‘Dabai Bhi Kadai Bhi’. He stated that Sikkim is well equipped with the COVID-19 testing and treating equipments with the support of experienced Doctors, Nurses and other Front Line Workers. Moreover, he appealed to the masses to abide by the COVID-19 preventive measures and stick to the guidelines at all times. He also requested the public to restrict unnecessary movement so as to prevent the spreading of the second wave of the virus.