New Delhi; Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday visited Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, and Pune to examine the coronavirus vaccine development work.reportsThe A day-long visit was targeted at obtaining a first-hand outlook of the practices, challenges, and roadmap in India’s effort to inoculate the citizens of India.
Mr. Modi started by visiting pharma major Zydus Cadila’s manufacturing establishment near Ahmedabad wearing a PPE kit. He examined the vaccine development method at the company’s research center, located over 20 km from Ahmedabad. Mr. Modi was broadly informed about the vaccine work at the plant by the company officials. He was informed about the vaccine production methodology. He talked with scientists and vaccine developers, an official said.
“Visited the Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad to know more about the indigenous DNA based vaccine being developed by Zydus Cadila. I compliment the team behind this effort for their work. The government of India is actively working with them to support them in this journey,” Mr. Modi tweeted after the visit. Zydus Cadila chairman Pankaj Patel said that the company is desiring to finish the vaccine trial by March 2021 and could make up to 100 million doses a year.
Mr. Modi stayed over an hour at the factory, before departing for the airport, from where he left for Hyderabad at 11.40 a.m.Mr. Modi landed at Hakimpet Air Force station near Hyderabad around 1 p.m. and moved to pharma major Bharat Biotech’s vaccine manufacturing company at Genome Valley, located around 20 km from the air station, by road. At the establishment, he studied the progress of Covaxin, a vaccine prospect being developed by the company. He also communicated with Bharat Biotech Chairman and Managing Director Krishna Ella, scientists, and senior management.
“At the Bharat Biotech facility in Hyderabad, was briefed about their indigenous COVID-19 vaccine. Congratulated the scientists for their progress in the trials so far. Their team is closely working with ICMR to facilitate speedy progress,” Mr. Modi tweeted. Covaxin, being developed by Bharat Biotech in cooperation with the Indian Council of Medical Research and National Institute of Virology, is experiencing phase-3 trials.
At 3.20 p.m., Mr. Modi took off for Pune, where he reached at 4.30 p.m. From the airport, Mr. Modi moved by helicopter to the Serum Institute of India at Manjari, located 17 km from the airport. Mr. Modi talked with scientists at the Serum Institute of India and went around the establishment, taking supply of vaccine development work being taken out there.
Mr. Modi’s visit to SII was targeted at examining the improvement of the vaccine candidate for coronavirus and to know about its launch, production, and allocation mechanism, an official said. Serum Institute of India has incorporated with pharma giant AstraZeneca and Oxford University for the vaccine.