India began its ‘Vaccine Maitri’ to supply Covid vaccine to different nations almost a one-and-a-half-month ago. The country has carried around 45.6 million doses of ‘Made in India’ Covid vaccines to 45 countries during the period.

Till now, as many as 15 countries have received COVID-19 vaccine supplies from India, while another 25 countries are lined up at different levels to receive supplies, Union Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar has said. He added that the countries that wish to get vaccines from India include three categories – poor countries, countries which are price sensitive, and other nations which directly deal with the vaccine-making pharmaceutical companies, according to a report by a news agency.

The courses to supply vaccine doses to these 25 countries are at different stages of pipeline, the minister said, adding that this demand has aided in putting India on the world map in this regard.

Following requests from various countries for the supply of Indian-manufactured vaccines, the government had started the supply of Covid vaccine on January 20 to Bhutan, Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar and Seychelles under the grant assistance.

Till now, two vaccines have established regulatory approval in India for the immunization drive against coronavirus. These include Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin and Oxford-AstraZeneca’s vaccine variant Covishield which is being manufactured in India by Serum Institute of India located in Pune.

The drive to administer the vaccines to frontline workers in the country began on January 16, when the immunization drive was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


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Joydev Mishra

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