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‘Is his boss listening’: Jairam Ramesh’s jibe after Nitin Gadkari bats for more licenses for vaccines

Nitin Gadkari had suggested that more domestic companies should be given the licence to manufacture these vaccines and life-saving drugs to tackle the pandemic.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
May 19, 2021 1:45:08 pm
Nitin Gadkari (File photo)

A day after Union Minister Nitin Gadkari suggested that more pharma companies should be allowed to make Covid-19 vaccines in the country, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh took to Twitter and said that this was suggested by the former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in his letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“But is his Boss listening? This is what Dr. Manmohan Singh had suggested on April 18th,” the Congress leader wrote on Twitter.

Addressing vice-chancellors of universities in India virtually on Tuesday, Gadkari said: “If the demand for the vaccine is more than supply then it creates a problem. So, instead of one company, let 10 more companies be given the license to manufacture the vaccine. First let them supply in the country and later if there is surplus, they may export.”

Gadkari’s remarks follow similar comments by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal who had written to the Prime Minister, saying the Centre should share the vaccine formula of the two manufacturers with other capable pharmaceutical companies to scale up production.

In his letter to PM Modi on April 18, Manmohan Singh asked the Centre to make public details of the orders placed by the Government for Covid vaccine doses and indicate the strategy for them to be distributed in a transparent manner.

Vaccinations were opened to all adults from May 1 and the centre said states and private hospitals could buy doses directly from manufacturers. However, the crippling shortage of vaccines has hit vaccinations in several states and many have put on hold the drive for adults below 45.

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