The day after India was offered the green signal for the emergency use of two Covid-19 vaccines, Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi said India is now on the path of implementing the world’s largest vaccination programme. “The largest vaccination programme for COVID-19 in the world is scheduled to begin in India. The nation is proud of the contribution of its scientists and engineers for this,” Mr. Modi said while addressing the National Metrology Conclave.
Mr. Modi said it must be ensured that ‘Made in India’ commodities not only have global demand but also global acceptance. Quality is as critical as quantity. “In our journey for Aatmanirbhar Bharat, our standards should expand with our scale,” he said.
He said, “Indian scientists have been active in developing two “Made in India” ‘Covid-19 vaccines’, and the country is proud of its scientists.”
On January 4, 2020, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved the first indigenous DNA vaccine candidate for COVID-19, ZyCoV-D, by Zydus Cadila, for the conduct of Phase III clinical trials. Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, DBT and Chairperson, BIRAC said, “The Government of India’s Department of Biotechnology has collaborated with Zydus Cadila to meet the need for accelerated production of an indigenous COVID-19 vaccine. The collaboration shows that such research activities reflect the government’s emphasis on developing an environment that nurtures and facilitates socially relevant new product innovation.”
On January 3, 2020, The Indian drug regulator approved the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine Covishield, manufactured by the Serum Institute, and developed Bharat Biotech’s indigenous Covaxin for the country’s restricted emergency use, paving the way for immunisation drive.
The development was called a ‘decisive turning point’ by PM Mr. Modi, accelerating the path’ to a healthier and Covid-free country.