India fast-tracking processes to develop Covid-19 vaccine: ICMR

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India fast-tracking processes to develop Covid-19 vaccine: ICMR


NEW DELHI: India is among many other countries like Russia, China, US and UK fast-tracking processes to develop a vaccine for

Covid-19

,

the Indian Council of Medical Research

(ICMR)

director general Balram Bhargava

said, underlining the important role of India as the supplier of 60% vaccines administered across the world.

Bhargava said all the countries developing a vaccine are in touch with Indian companies because irrespective of where a vaccine is developed, India will play a key role in manufacturing it for the masses.

He also stressed that it is “moral duty” to fast-track development of a vaccine but without “compromising on the science, quality and ethics part of it”.

“Any vaccine candidate developed and produced in any part of the world, will ultimately have to be scaled up by India or China because these are the two main producers. That is why every developed nation is in communication with India on vaccines,” Bhargava said.

Bhargava’s remarks come in the wake of a letter from him to all the principal investigators to fast-track clinical trials, saying it is “envisaged” to launch the Covid-19 vaccine for public health use by August 15. The letter – sent earlier this month – stirred controversy with public health experts and the scientific community raising concerns over the indicated timeline.

“As far as the vaccine development is concerned, we expect it to be complete as soon as possible. We don’t want to waste a single day on the regulatory front or approval. However, it will be done without compromising on the science, quality, and ethics part of it,” Bhargava said.

“From India’s perspective, we have two candidates and are trying all efforts to fast-track it and it is the moral duty that there should not be a delay of a day for regulatory clearances for the vaccine so that we can break the transmission of the virus as soon as poss

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