COVID-19 vaccine: Mumbai's Haffkine gets Centre's green signal to produce Covaxin
The Centre has approved the production of Covaxin from the Maharashtra government-owned Haffkine Institute in Mumbai
Mumbai: In a major step to ramp up vaccine production amid the COVID-19 second wave, the Centre has approved production of Corona vaccines from the Maharashtra government-owned Haffkine Institute in Mumbai.
Since the past month, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had repeatedly requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to allow production of vaccines in the renowned institution in central Mumbai. The central approval came late on Thursday night green-flagging the 122-year-old Haffkine Institute, Parel, to produce the Bharat Biotech's Covaxin for one-year under a technology transfer agreement.
Shortly after the announcement, Thackeray thanked the PM for the formal nod, sent by the Department of Science & Technology Secretary to state Chief Secretary Sitaram Kunte of the approval for a period of 12 months.
The Haffkine Institute has the capacity to produce 22-crore doses annually, which would immensely help the ongoing Vaccination drive in the country with complaints of vaccine shortages coming up from several states including Maharashtra. Maharashtra requires at least 40 lakh doses per week to vaccinate 6-7 lakh people per day. The state is immunising 2-3.5 lakh people a day currently.
Maharashtra's Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday, also thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for permitting Maharashtra-owned Haffkine Institute to manufacture Bharat Biotech's Covaxin. Covaxin, manufactured by Bharat Biotech, has been indigenously advanced in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). Two doses of the vaccine are taken with a gap of 28 days.
In a tweet, the Chief Minister's Office said, "The Dept of Science and Technology, Government of India, has granted approval to Haffkine Institute to produce Bharat Biotech's Covaxin vaccine on a transfer of technology basis."
In a letter addressed to PM Modi, CM Thackeray earlier this week, listed different measures to be taken in view of the lockdown style curfew that started on Wednesday amid surge in the spread of COVID-19.
(With inputs from IANS)