Govt spent Rs.250 crore on COVID-19 vaccine research: Health Minister Mandaviya
While addressing the program ‘Shri Kamalam’, the Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said that the Central government has spent Rs.250 crore on research for developing vaccines to counter the COVID-19 virus.
The program ‘Shri Kamalam’ was organized to explain the benefits of the Union Budget 2022-23 at the Gujarat BJP headquarters here.
Mandaviya said, “The Centre spent and shared Rs.250 crore with private research institutes working on developing Covid vaccines. We started taking action long back as we knew that vaccination was the key to fight the global pandemic. In order to develop vaccines, research was needed. In April 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called upon the scientists of both government and private institutes and encouraged them to develop vaccines. Irrespective of whether they succeeded, the Centre supported them with funding.”
“As a result, our scientists developed the indigenous Corona vaccine, parallel to the other developed countries, and the nationwide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16, 2021. We also started manufacturing rapidly and before the third wave struck, we vaccinated a large section of the population. We have achieved 96 percent vaccination for the first dose, and 77.5 percent for the second dose. Experts say that in India, 99.31 percent of vaccinated people (first and second dose) were kept safe from COVID-19 due to vaccination,” Mandaviya said.
The Health Minister said, “India is a vast country with so many cultural, social and financial diversities. So, we have made the Budget an all-inclusive and comprehensive one with a long-term vision, considering a period of 25 years. This is the vision of the Prime Minister, and that is why we are saying that the Budget is for the ‘Amrit Kaal‘.”
“We also identified 53 raw materials essential for manufacturing, for which we were dependent on other countries. We have come out with the Product Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, where 20 percent of what the manufacturers are losing out due to buying Indian raw materials is being provided by the government. The government spent Rs.4 lakh crore on the PLI scheme in the last one-and-a-half years. We are planning more such PLI schemes.”
The Minister said that the government is also planning to come up with a ‘Land Bank‘, where land required for any purpose will be available on a dashboard in order to ease land availability.
“We are also planning a data and analytics center for data storage and analysis. Data is the need of the hour. The government will provide infrastructure to those who are into data analysis and data storage,” added Mandaviya.
The Minister also spoke about developing a national industrial corridor, which will be formed to chalk out a 25-year plan for developing industries, based on scientific assessment.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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