‘World looking up to India’: PM to vaccine makers

NEW DELHI: Representatives from India’s leading Covid vaccine manufacturers lauded PM Modi for his encouragement in research and innovation.
They appreciated PM’s leadership in speeding up regulatory processes that allowed enhancing manufacturing capacity and India’s mass inoculation programme to gain momentum.
The Prime Minister, on the other hand, praised efforts of vaccine manufacturers for helping India cross 100 crore vaccination milestone
PM Modi today met representatives from seven vaccine makers- Serum Institute of India, Bharat Biotech, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, Zydus Cadila, Biological E, Gennova Biopharma and Panacea Biotech- during an interaction.
Also present were Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya and MoS health Bharati Pawar.
Vaccine manufacturers must continuously work together to be ready to face future challenges, and the world is looking up to India, PM Modi said.
India needs to institutionalise best practices learnt during last one and half years, he added.
Speaking after the meeting, Adar Poonawalla of Serum Institute of India credited PM Modi’s vision for the 100 crore vaccine milestone.
He said the meeting discussed means to take the industry forward and prepare for future pandemics and to continue enhancing capacity.
“All over the world now, countries are going to invest in vaccine production and India needs to stay ahead. We discussed how to do that together with industry and government,” he said.
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Vaccine makers felt if country had been following old norms, there would have been considerable delay in vaccination against Covid-19, the PMO said in a release after the meeting.
Serum MD Cyrus Poonawalla said, “Had it not been for him (Modi) and (he) driving the health ministry, today India would not have been able to make a billion doses. There is no doubt in my mind about that.”
PM Modi was happy that Serum Institute has been able to live up to its promise of augmenting capacity and helping make India self-reliant in vaccines, he added.
Pankaj Patel of Zydus, another vaccine maker, said Modi was the “biggest factor” in the development of the DNA-based Covid vaccine.
He praised the Prime Minister for his encouragement and support and also for mentioning the DNA vaccine at his address at the United Nations.
(With agency inputs)

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