With preparations for vaccine development and distribution reaching an advanced stage in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday will embark on a three-city tour to take stock of the Covid-19 vaccine development work.
According to reports, the visit will start from Zydus Biotech Park on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. Modi is expected to arrive at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Airport around 9am. From there, he will head towards Changodar in a helicopter. Zydus Cadila’s Vaccine Technology Centre is located at Changodar Park where the pharma company is developing its Covid-19 vaccine candidate ZyCoV-D.
From Ahmedabad, Modi is expected to fly to Pune where he will review the status of the vaccine, including its launch, production and distribution mechanisms. “We have received confirmation about PM Modi’s visit to the Serum Institute of India on Saturday, but his minute-to-minute program is yet to be received,” Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao told PTI.
From there, PM Modi will travel to Hyderabad to visit Bharat Biotech’s facility where the indigenous vaccine Covaxin is being developed.
In a recent meeting with the chief ministers and other representatives of all states and union territories, PM Modi said governments at all levels will have to work together to ensure that the vaccination drive is smooth, systematic and sustained. “It is not yet decided whether there will be one, two or three doses of vaccine. Their prices are also not decided. We don’t have answers to such questions right now as there are different people in the world making it. The corporate world is involved, there is competition among them, countries have their diplomatic interests, have to wait for WHO also,” Modi said.