New Delhi: Several foreign envoys will be visiting Pune on December 4 to see India’s COVID-19 vaccine development programme. The visit, organized by India’s Ministry of External Affairs will be a one-day visit and see them visit two institutes– the Serum institute of India and Gennova Biopharmaceuticals.
The visit was one of the key outcomes of Soreign Secretary Harsh Shringla’s meet with the envoy earlier this month in Delhi. On November 6,Shringla along with Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, Prof. K Vijay Raghavan, Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology, Ashutosh Sharma briefed more than 190 heads of diplomatic missions on India’s action on COVID pandemic.
Serum Institute is involved in the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine against COVID while Gennova is working on mRNA based vaccine.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his virtual meet with Chief Minister earlier this week said, “work on vaccine research is almost at the last stage both in the country as well as in the world” and the “Indian government is keeping a close eye on each and every development and we are in touch with everybody”, pointing out, “it is not yet decided whether there will be one, two or three doses of vaccine or what will be its price.”
India is expected to be a major center of the global covid vaccine manufacturing and supply. Amidst the COVID pandemic, India has emerged as the Pharma Capital of the world supplying medicines such as HCQ, Paracetamol to more than 150 countries.
On vaccine development programme, New Delhi has organized training programmes on clinical trials for neighbouring countries in which nearly 90 experts from 8 countries participated.
It has sent aid, in terms of food and medicines to 5 Indian ocean countries–Maldives, Mauritius, Madagascar, Comoros and Seychelles and 4 African countries–Sudan, South Sudan, Djibouti and Eritrea.