At the beginning of the first phase of the vaccination drive, the union minister was seen holding a dosage of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin at AIIMS Delhi. Image: ANIAs the nationwide rollout for vaccination against the novel Coronavirus infection started in India today, the Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan compared vaccines to ‘Sanjeevani,’ a medicinal plant that is known for saving lives as per Hindu mythology. “I am very happy and satisfied today. We have been fighting against COVID-19 in the PM’s leadership for the last one year. This vaccine will work as a ‘sanjeevani’ in the fight against COVID-19, which has entered the final stage,” ANI quoted Vardhan as saying.
At the beginning of the first phase of the vaccination drive, the union minister was seen holding a dosage of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin at AIIMS Delhi. Vardhan said that the immunisation campaign against COVID-19 done in India is the biggest in the world. The country has “tremendous experience in handling such issues” as India has dealt with polio and smallpox vaccinations and eradicated them.
Earlier, the world’s largest vaccination drive to curb the spread of COVID-19 infection was kicked-off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi via a video conference. PM Modi announced that India is one of the few countries that was able to provide medicines and other medicinal help to many countries despite the hardships it faced. From paracetamols and hydroxychloroquine to providing testing equipment, the country has made efforts to help people of other countries as well, he asserted. He added that the indigenous vaccine developed as well as the production capabilities of the country will be used for human interest and all will benefit from it. “Today, when we’ve developed our own vaccine, the world is looking at India with hope,” he said.
Meanwhile, AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Guleria addressed the concerns of people stating that both vaccines are safe and efficacious. He further asked people to have confidence in the country’s researchers, scientists and regulatory authorities and not be choosy about vaccination as there are a huge number of people (more than 130 crore) to be vaccinated. India is currently giving doses of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin and Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield.
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