Chidambaram accuses Govt of vaccine Policy, asks why govt delayed emergency approval to Covid vaccine

Congress leader and Ex-Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Thursday lashed the central government of unnecessarily delaying approval to Covid-19 vaccines in the country for many months except in the case of Covaxin, Covishield and Sputnik V.

"Why has it taken 8-9 months for the government to decide to give approval when the US and other countries had granted approval. Our suspicion that the government had not approved any vaccine other than Covishield, Covaxin and Sputnik V, has been proved correct,"Why did government go through the charade of negotiating quantities with Pfizer and Moderna without first giving Emergency Use Approval (EUA) to their vaccines?´ Chidambaram said.

"Remember, Dr. Manmohan Singh had made this specific suggestion in his letter which got a rude reply from the Union  Health Minister!" he added. The former Prime Minister had also added that India currently has vaccinated only a small fraction of its population, adding that with the right policy design, "We can do much better and very quickly." Experts from the National Institute of Malaria Research and the Indian Council of Medical Research, on Wednesday, slammed the government for poor planning of the home-grown vaccine production and deployment, as a result of which "India doesn't have enough vaccines to go around with", they said.

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