New Delhi- India is all set to receive its first shipment of the Sputnik-V, a Russian COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday.
Kirill Dmitriev, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) who is in charge of the global marketing of the Sputnik-V vaccine told that the first dose of the vaccine will be arriving in India on Saturday. However, Dmitriev did not specify the exact number of vaccines that will be sent to India on the first shipment on Saturday. He hoped that the Russian made vaccine will help India to combat the second wave of the deadly infectious virus.
As the cases of the novel coronavirus keep skyrocketing and spiraling out of control with every passing day making India the second-worst COVID-19 affected nation in the world with its healthcare infrastructure on the verge of collapsing, the centre has decided to ramp up the vaccination drive by procuring vaccines manufactured in other parts of the world like Russia's Sputnik-V besides administering the indigenous COVISHIELD and COVAXIN.
The states Delhi, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Bengal, Kerala, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh on Friday claimed that they were facing shortages of COVID-19 vaccines but the centre countered their claims stating that they have over one crore vaccines available in the states. The availability of the Russia-made COVID-19 vaccine will help boost up the availability of vaccines in the states thereby preventing the states from making any further alteration in their vaccination drive.
The arrival of the Sputnik-V vaccines comes on the day when India has announced to administer vaccines to all adults above the age of 18, an ultimate resolution for the fight against the deadly infectious viral disease. The inclusion of the Russian vaccine in India's inoculation drive will help the country make a comeback during this COVID-19 inflicted humanitarian crisis.
Earlier this week, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a conversation with Russian President Vladamir Putin expressed the vitality of the Sputnik-V as an effective tool in battling the COVID-19 virus.
Sputnik-V had been subjected to a lot of skepticism in the recent past but as per many experts this Russian vaccine is a "scientific and a political win for both Putin and Russia." The makers of this vaccine, Gamaleya Research Centre claimed this vaccine to be the best vaccine against the novel coronavirus in the world. As of now, 60 countries in the world have approved the administration of the Sputnik-V.
Meanwhile, India on Friday for the first time recorded over 4 lakh cases of the novel coronavirus in a new record global high taking the total tally of caseload to 1.91 crores. 3,523 cases of COVID-19 induced fatalities were reported in the last 24 hours taking the total death toll in the country to 2.11 lakhs. The active COVID-19 cases in the country now amount to 32.63 lakh. India reported more than 3 lakh COVID-19 cases daily for the ninth day in a row, making it the second-worst COVID-19 affected country in the world after the United States.