Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a 15-minute stop at the Serum Institute of India on Sunday and evinced interest in the Clean City initiative launched by the Poonawalla Group. Modi told the Serum Institute officials that it was a good initiative and other cities should follow this model.
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Modi, who was in Pune at an international conference organised by Vasantdada Sugar Institute, Manjari, arrived at 7 pm at Serum Institute and also expressed appreciation over the largest vaccine manufacturing facility in the world that made low cost vaccines to protect children, Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India said on Sunday.
Poonawalla is among five Indians who this year had made it to the Forbes Asia’s annual list of philanthropists for pledging Rs 100 crore to clean Pune. Adar Poonawalla Clean City Movement was launched early this year with the aim to make Pune 100 per cent garbage free. The Poonawalla group has collaborated with the Pune Municipal Corporation to initiate the Adar Poonawalla clean city movement.
“The PMO had informed us about Modi’s visit and that he had expressed interest in the Clean City Pune initiative. He told us that that it was a good project under the Swachh Bharat Mission and the initiative should be a model for other cities. Pune generates at least 1700 tonnes of waste per day out of which 800-850 is wet waste. “What the movement has done is to scientifically collect, transport and process organic waste in an environmentally sustainable manner,” Poonawalla told Newsline.
Meanwile, the Serum Institute is the world’s fifth largest vaccine manufacturer by volume with an installed capacity of over one billion doses of different vaccines annually, and has two manufacturing plants in Pune and the Netherlands. “The Prime Minister was appreciative that low cost vaccines were made to protect children. He encouraged us to make vaccines against diseases at affordable rates and make them available,” Poonawalla said.
Chairman of Serum Institute Cyrus Poonawala, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Sharad Pawar and others were present.