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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Sunday, 20 June 2021 7.30 PM IST

Protect Indians first! Govt rejects SII’s request to export 50 lakh doses of Covishield to UK

narendra-modi

NEW DELHI: Amid reports of COVID-19 vaccine shortage across the country, Narendra Modi government has refused to allow the Serum Institute of India (SII) to export around 50 lakh doses of Covishield vaccine to the United Kingdom.

While rejecting SII’s request, the central government insisted that the local vaccine production be supplied to protect Indians first.

Notably, the particular Covishield doses are expected to be earmarked to vaccinate people between 18-44 years’.

“These 50 lakh doses of Covishield vaccine are now available for inoculating people between 18-44 years’ age. States have been asked to procure it. Private hospitals can also get them,” an official source was quoted by ToI as saying.

Several opposition parties, including Congress, have repeatedly hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for allowing export of huge number of coronavirus COVID vaccine doses at a time when India itself is facing shortage of jabs against the deadly contagious virus which has wreaked havoc.

Adar Poonawalla, the CEO of SII, recently assured that the production of Covishield is in full swing in Pune.

In a huge relief, SII had reduced the price of its COVID-19 vaccine from Rs 400 to Rs 300 per dose for states. However, it would continue to supply Covishield doses for Rs 600 to private hospitals. Following the Centre's big announcement of phase 3 of the vaccination drive, the Serum Institute had declared that the price of Covishield will be Rs 400 per dose for states and Rs 600 for private hospitals.

Under the Vaccine Maitri initiative, the Indian government has gifted lakhs of Covid vaccine doses to 95 countries so far.

Notably, Bharat Biotech's has fixed the price of Covaxin at Rs 600 per dose for state governments and Rs 1,200 per dose for private hospitals.

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TAGS: PROTECT INDIANS FIRST, GOVT REJECTS, SII, REQUEST, EXPORT, 50 LAKH DOSES OF COVISHIELD, UK
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