Modi says India adopted people-centric strategy to combat COVID-19 pandemic
New Delhi, May 12, 2022
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said India had adopted a people-centric strategy to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and had made the highest ever allocation for its health budget this year.
Participating in the Second Global COVID Virtual Summit, at the invitation of United States President Joe Biden, Modi also stated that India was runing the largest vaccination campaign in the world and had vaccinated close to 90 per cent of its adult population and more than 50 million children so far.
In his remarks during the opening session of the summit, on the theme "Preventing Pandemic Fatigue and Prioritizing Preparedness", he said the pandemic continued to disrupt lives, supply chains, and test the resilience of open societies.
The Prime Minister said India manufactures four WHO-approved vaccines and has the capacity to produce five billion doses this year.
"We supplied over 200 million doses to 98 countries, bilaterally and through COVAX. India has developed low-cost COVID mitigation technologies for testing, treating and data management. We have offered these capabilities to other countries.
"India's Genomics Consortium has contributed significantly to the global database on the virus. I am happy to share that we will extend this network to countries in our neighborhood," he said.
Modi also said that India had extensively used its traditional medicines to supplement the fight against COVID and to boost immunity, saving countless lives.
"Last month, we laid the foundation of the WHO Centre for Traditional Medicine in India, with an aim to make this age-old knowledge available to the world," he said.
The Prime Minister said it was clear that a coordinated global response is required to combat future health emergencies.
"We must build a resilient global supply chain and enable equitable access to vaccines and medicines.
"WTO rules, particularly TRIPS need to be more flexible. WHO must be reformed and strengthened to build a more resilient global health security architecture.
"We also call for stream-lining WHO's approval process for vaccines and therapeutics to keep supply chains stable and predictable. As a responsible member of the global community, India is ready to play a key role in these efforts," he added.
Other participants included co-hosts of the event - Heads of State/Government of Belize in its capacity as Chair of CARICOM, Senegal as Chair of African Union, Indonesia as President of G20 and Germany as President of G7, respectively.
The Secretary General of the United Nations, the Director General of World Health Organization and other dignitaries also participated.
The Prime Minister had also participated in the first Global COVID virtual summit hosted by President Biden on September 22 last year.