NEW DELHI: PM Narendra Modi made an important contribution Saturday, inviting global vaccine manufacturers “to arrive and to make vaccines in India,” to take a leading place in the global fight against Covid-19
PM Modi said at the 76th session of the UN General Assembly that “I invite the production of vaccines all over the world — come and make vaccines in India.”
“I want to inform UNGA that the first DNA vaccine in the world has been developed by India that can be administered to everyone above 12. The last phase of development of another mRNA vaccine is under way. India’s scientists are also engaged in the development of a nasal vaccine for Corona,” he said.
The invitation comes at a time when inadequate supplies and inequitable distribution of vaccines have raised the fear that the twin issues might delay global recovery from the pandemic and may appear to be a move to transform India’s image as a cause of concern that it looked after the country was ravaged by the “second wave”, into an emergency responder and part of the solution. India earned considerable goodwill when the Modi government launched “Vaccine Maitri” initiative to reach vaccines to the under-resourced capitals at a time when developed countries stubbornly refused to look beyond their shores. The second wave derailed the vaccine initiative as New Delhi decided to first look after its own.
Highlighting India’s achievements and progress in Covid vaccine development despite limited resources, the PM said the country lives by ‘Seva Paramo Dharma’ (service is the main duty) and is engaged in vaccine development and manufacturing with full dedication.
While Ahmedabad-based Zydus Cadila’s three-dose anti-Covid jab ZyCoV-D has got emergency use authorisation for those above 12 years of age, Pune-based biotechnology firm Gennova Biopharmaceuticals is working on the country’s first mRNA-based Covid vaccine. Besides, Bharat Biotech is conducting trials with a nasal vaccine.