Amidst the surge in COVID-19 cases in India and the arrival of the double mutant variant of the virus, which originated from the UK and other countries, has made it a challenging situation for the traders and business people to carry forward their smooth work. The situation was almost improving in January and February, and with the announcement of the vaccine, arrival citizens had high hopes. But after few days of commencement of the vaccination drive, it went short, and not even 5% of the citizens have been vaccinated till now. Merely 2.7% of the people have been fully vaccinated till now. The government distributed the vaccines to the world for free without even caring for its citizens and economy to gain the title of the supreme leader.
After so much discussion and criticism by the people now the government has finally decided to vaccinate people above 18 from May 1. But has the supply of vaccines restored, and is the efficiency of vaccination drive increased? The current vaccination drive is so slow that the experts suggest that not even 70% of the citizens will be fully vaccinated by December 2021. Now the government officials have decided that India will waive 10% customs duty on imported COVID-19 vaccines.
Import of vaccines from the world amidst vaccine shortage
Since the vaccines went short, the vaccination drive has become slow, resulting in merely 2.7% of people being vaccinated. On the other hand, countries like the USA and UK curbed the virus in the meantime and vaccinated the people fast as they have an efficient and well-prepared plan for the vaccination drive. India will now import Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson and Johnson vaccines and have urged the respective companies to sell their products in India. India will also import Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine in India by April. The official, who declined to be named, also said the government considered allowing private organizations to import vaccines that were allowed to be sold in the open market without government intervention. They can also be given the freedom to set prices, he added.
Currently, the Indian government permits the sale and purchase of all the COVID-19 shots to speed up the vaccination process in the country. Countries like Nepal, Pakistan, Latin American nations like Brazil and Argentina have not produced vaccine levy heavy-duty ranging from 10-20% on the vaccine import.
Huge demand for vaccines as the cases surge
As corruption always persists in India, even during COVID, where people are losing their lives daily, vaccines are being sold in the market at tremendous rates. The Remdesivir injection, which one of the few drugs to treat the virus from spreading in the body, is in massive demand as several old-age people in critical condition need it. The Remdesivir is now being sold in the black market at such huge rates that economically backward families can’t afford it and have no option but to see their loved ones suffer. The government earlier this month approved the urgent use of imported vaccines to prevent the spread of coronavirus infections. With 2,59 lakh new infections, the case has dropped to 1.53 crore, making India the second most affected country after the US, reporting more than 3.1 crore diseases. India’s death from Covid-19 has risen by a record 1,761 to more than 1.8 lakh.