India Gets Third Covid-19 Vaccine As DCGI Approves Use Of Russian Sputnik V After Expert Panel's Recommendation
In a positive development, merely hours after the subject expert panel's recommendation of approving the Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine for use in India, the Drugs Controller General of India V G Somani on Monday (12 April) gave the emergency use approval to the Russian vaccine.
Earlier on Monday, the Subject Expert Committee (SEC) of the Indian drug regulator had recommended the vaccine for emergeny use in the country.
The DCGI approval to the Russian Covid-19 vaccine comes as a big boost to the ongoing nationwide inoculation campaign as the government would soon have three vaccines for the vaccination drive. The two other vaccines that have been approved in the country are Serum Institute of India (SII)'s Covishield and Bharat Biotech's indigenously developed Covaxin.
The announcement about Indian drug regulator's approval was made by the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which co-developed the vaccine.
It should be noted that with this development, India has become the 60th nation in the world to allow the rollout of Sputnik V.
The vaccine has been developed by Russia's Gamaleya Institute and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF). RDIF has partnered with Hyderabad based Dr Reddy's Laboratories in India for the distribution of up to 250 million doses in the nation.
Other than this, RDIF has also tied up with other Indian pharmaceutical players like Gland Pharma, Hetero Biopharma, Stelis Biopharma, Virchow Biotech and Panacea Biotec to produce more than 850 million doses for global supplies.
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, said, “We appreciate the decision of India’s regulatory bodies to grant authorization for Sputnik V. Approval of the vaccine is a major milestone as Russia and India have been developing an extensive cooperation on clinical trials of Sputnik V in India and its local production", according to a RDIF statement.
The Russian vaccine has efficacy of 91.6 per cent and provides full protection against severe cases of COVID-19 as demonstrated by the data published in one of the leading medical journals The Lancet.
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