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PM Modi sets in motion a complex deployment plan as India begins World's Largest Covid-19 Vaccination Drive

Harsh Sanghavi

Apr 27, 2021

India collectively breathes a sigh of relief as the battle against Covid-19 will finally see the end with the start of the world's largest inoculation drive starting on Saturday. There will be light at the end of the tunnel for three crore healthcare and frontline workers first in line to be vaccinated. Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the vaccination programme via video conferencing on Saturday morning. A total of three thousand session sites across States and UTs virtually connected to launch the drive.

The Indian government under the dedicated leadership of Modi, worked tirelessly to ensure that in the first phase, three crore healthcare workers are vaccinated and for the second phase, an ambitious plan of inoculating thirty crore citizen is laid out. The vaccination programme was also hailed by WHO South-East Asia Office which congratulated India for its efforts to fight the pandemic. Behind the successful launch of the nationwide campaign against Covid-19, there has been months of careful planning, routine checks to the vaccine storage facilities across the country and systematic procedures followed to ensure that India paves the way in the world’s fight against the deadly disease.

It was PM Modi personal involvement that particularly helped accelerate India vaccination drive. Late last November, Modi visited the units of three vaccine manufactures to review the progress of vaccine development. He visited the Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad, Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad and Serum Institute of India in Pune. This exercise helped instil a sense of confidence among vaccine manufacturing companies. The Central Government worked cutting across party lines to conduct not only but two dry run across the country. This was done to check the best way to vaccinate people and plug loopholes in logistics and training. Health Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan visited Tamil Nadu to oversee the dry run drill.

This effort from the ruling government comes as more-developed nations still struggle to inoculate their citizens. As Modi rightly mentioned, There are about 100 countries having less than three crore population and India is vaccinating three crore citizens in the first phase itself.

India has given the nod for emergency use of two vaccines- Bharat Biotech International Ltd and the Serum Institute of India Ltd. The Covaxin and Covishield as it is called, respectively will be given in two doses. This is a monumental moment for Indian Medical Science not only due to unparalleled vaccination drive but also a huge success for the Make In India Campaign. The Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) is the world's largest manufacturer, has a license to produce the slot and the Hyderabad- based Bharat Biotech is India's first indigenous vaccine against the virus. As over 1.91 Lakh people are vaccinated against the virus on the first day, India is brimming with a sense of pride as only one major adverse effect of vaccine is reported across the country yet. Manish Kumar, a sanitation worker, was the first person to the receive the shot at AIIMS Delhi, in presence of Union Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan. Bharat Biotech is the only company to pay compensation if Covaxin causes side effects to its recipients. The government role and involvement even in the most intrinsic aspect of the vaccination programme as drawn much admiration from global leaders including Bill Gates and Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of WHO. They lauded India efforts and leadership in scientific innovation and decisive action to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is exactly this strong leadership that has helped India strengthen bilateral ties with countries like Brazil, which has sent a special flight to India to pick up two million coronavirus vaccine. Sri Lankan premier Mahinda Rajapaksha and Bhutan PM Lotay Tshering also took to Twitter to congratulate India for its landmark launch of nationwide Covid-19 vaccination drive. Taking the Digital India Campaign to the next level, the government has also launched the Co-WIN app which will be the official covid vaccine tracking app for Indian users, where citizens can self register themselves for the vaccine. Its a well thought and planned initiative undertaken by the Union government drawing support from all strata of the Indian society, which will eliminate the bureaucratic hurdles. India has established vast and strong network to administer the vaccination process, under the guidance of Modi and a stable central government which is crucial as the country aims to lift itself from the covid crisis which has disrupted the lives of millions. As India looks ahead to vaccinate its population, PM Modi has issued caution to continue practising social distancing and masks as the fight against the pandemic is still on.

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