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Grand Challenges Meet: India now at forefront of Covid-19 vaccine development, says PM Modi

"India is already working on putting a well-established vaccine delivery system in place. India's vaccine manufacturing and delivery capacity will help all of mankind in fighting this crisis," PM Modi said.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: October 19, 2020 8:45:26 pm
Narendra Modi spoke about the coronavirus situation in the country

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said India was now at forefront of vaccine development for Covid-19 and its manufacturing and delivery capacity would help everyone in fighting the crisis. Addressing the inaugural function of Grand Challenges Annual Meeting 2020, PM Modi lauded the strong and vibrant scientific community while saying that India was seeing a decline in the number of Covid-19 infections per day and the growth rate of cases.

“India is already working on putting a well-established vaccine delivery system in place. India’s vaccine manufacturing and delivery capacity will help all of mankind in fighting this crisis,” PM Modi said at the programme, which brings together scientists and innovators to deliberate on solving key global challenges.

“We want to help other nations enhance their capabilities in vaccine manufacturing and immunisation,” he added. According to the government, three vaccines are in advanced stages of development in India, of which two are in Phase II and one is in Phase III.

The prime minister further said India had one of the highest recovery rates of 88 per cent. “This happened because India was one of the first countries to adopt a lockdown, encourage the usage of masks, actively work on effective contact-tracing and was one of the earliest to deploy the rapid antigen tests,” he said.

“In India, we have a strong and vibrant scientific community. We also have good scientific institutions. They have been India’s greatest assets, specially during the last few months, while fighting Covid-19. From containment to capacity building, they have achieved wonders,” PM Modi said.

The government had previously estimated that it is likely to receive and utilise 400-500 million doses of Covid vaccine and that as many as 25 crore individuals could be vaccinated by July 2021.

Last week, PM Modi said to ensure speedy access to Covid-19 vaccine, the delivery system could learn from the successful conduct of elections and disaster management. Chairing a meeting to review the Covid-19 pandemic and preparedness of vaccine delivery, PM Modi is also learnt to have underlined the use of a strong IT backbone for vaccine administration.

“The Prime Minister stressed that every step in the logistics, delivery, and administration should be put in place rigorously. It must include advanced planning of cold storage chains, distribution network, monitoring mechanism, advance assessment, and preparation of ancillary equipment required, such as vials, syringes,” a government statement said.

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