NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged COVID vaccine manufacturers to continuously scale up their production capacity during an interaction on Tuesday.
Modi said that the private sector will play an even more active role in the vaccination drive in the coming days and that this will require better coordination between hospitals and the industry. He also assured all possible support and smooth approval process for the vaccine candidates which are currently under trial phase.
The Prime Minister was Interacting with vaccine manufacturers from across the country via video conferencing,
According to a statement from the PMO, Modi noted that the government has now allowed vaccination for every adult starting from May 1 as it believes in the ability of vaccine makers.
The prime minister credited the manufacturers for developing and producing vaccines in a record time and noted that the vaccines developed are the cheapest, with India undertaking the world's largest inoculation programme.
He also appreciated the efforts and studies being conducted by Indian scientists in the development of new vaccines.
The vaccine manufacturers thanked him for the government's decision of allowing vaccination for everyone above the age of 18 and various steps taken to give more incentives and flexibility, the statement said.
They also discussed their plans to ramp up production, upcoming vaccine candidates and research on the new variants, the statement said.
India has nearly 30 vaccine candidates at different stages of development.
The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had in January given the emergency use authorisation for two COVID-19 vaccines -- Covaxin of Bharat Biotech and Covishield of Oxford-AstraZeneca manufactured by Serum Institute of India in Pune. Earlier this month, the DCGI also gave approval to Russian vaccine Sputnik V.
Indigenous vaccine candidates of Zydus Cadila, Biological E and Gennova are also in the pipeline and are in advanced clinical trials in India.