Bengaluru, NFAPost: Bharat Biotech director Dr V Krishna Mohan said the development of Covaxin vaccine was an enormous challenge and a successful one at that at the end of 10 months time that we were given to make.
Addressing a session on India’s vaccine leadership at the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2021 on Thrusday, he said there were no vaccines when Covid-19 infections hit India and the world.
“This was a daunting challenge for the pharma sector and the prospective vaccine makers. We were given just 10 months to develop a vaccine to fight the infection but we could succeed in developing Covaxin vaccine swiftly at a level within these few months,” Dr Krishna Mohan said.
The director of Bharat Biotech said the government of India took the right steps at this juncture and the Biotechnology Ministry woke up to this reality. “There were no such past precedents and it seems impossible to make a vaccine in such a short span of time,” he said.
Dr Krishna Mohan said the company chalked out a plan to make and develop the Covaxine vaccine in India . He said it is difficult to quantify the hard work that went into the making of the vaccine. However, he said the company did not compromise on the quality or efficacy of the vaccine at any point of time.
He said Bharat Biotech was successful in releasing Covaxine vaccine in a record time and help save lives of crores of fellow Indians.
The director of Bharat Biotech said the Indian Council of Medical Research has positively changed its style of functioning in the last decade. The Government of India is extending grants of Rs 50 lakh to Rs 50 crore to individual pharma companies for development of vaccines which has made it easier for pharma companies to devise better development plans.
Participating in the session, Deepak Sapra, CEO, API & Services, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories said, “Covid has taught us tough lessons. With the help of our Russian partner we could develop Sputnik V vaccines which not only helped India but also developed countries. However, in respect of vaccine development it is a long way to go for India and Indian pharma companies.”
Divya Bizwan, Senior Vice-President of Aurobindo Pharma said there was no dearth of talent in India. But, there is hardly any recognition for talents in pharma companies. It is necessary for vaccine makers to recognize this need and be more encouraging to the pool of talent that Indian pharma sector has.
Atin Tomar, CEO of Yapan Bio also participated in the session. The session was moderated by Dr Mahesh Balghat.