Focus on review of status of COVID-19 vaccine candidate and its launch, production and distribution processes.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to visit the city-based Serum Institute of India on Saturday, senior Pune administration authorities confirmed on Thursday. The SII has partnered with pharma major AstraZeneca and Oxford University for its COVID-19 vaccine.
Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao said the detailed programme of the Prime Minister’s visit was expected soon.
“We have received confirmation regarding the Prime Minister’s visit to the SII on November 28 [Saturday], but we are yet to receive his minute-to-minute programme,” said Mr. Rao.
The Central Drug Standard Control Organisation has granted permission for the manufacture of COVID-19 vaccine for pre-clinical test, examination and analysis to seven firms, two of which are the Serum Institute of India (SII) and the Gennova Biopharmaceuticals.
Earlier this week, the Divisional Commissioner had said there was a possibility of the Prime Minister visiting the SII and that the event would centre around reviewing the status of the SII’s vaccine candidate and to know about its launch, production and distribution processes.
Top administration and police authorities in both the Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad civic bodies have begun preparations in full swing in anticipation of the high-profile visit.
In view of Mr. Modi’s visit, another major event — a visit by ambassadors and High Commissioners from around 100 countries to both the SII and Gennova Biopharmaceuticals Ltd. in Pune’s Hinjewadi area — scheduled for November 27 has now been pushed back to December 4, said the authorities.
Gennova Biopharmaceuticals is set to commence Phase 1 clinical trials of its own vaccine candidate.