New Delhi: The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare denied media reports alleging that Centre has not placed any fresh order for COVID-19 vaccines. In a statement released on Monday, the ministry added that the reports are incorrect and not based on facts.
“There have been some media reports alleging that the Centre has not placed any fresh order for COVID19 vaccines,” it read and further said, “These media reports are completely incorrect, and are not based on facts.”
The Ministry of Health gave an elaborate clarification about the amount Centre has released so far to Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech to procure 11 crore doses of Covishield vaccine and 5 crore Covaxin doses during May, June and July. These are in addition to previous order for 10 crore doses of Covishield vaccine and 2 crore doses of Covaxin vaccine.
According to the Ministry of Health, Centre has paid an advance of over Rs 1732.50 cr to SII while Rs 787.50 cr has been paid to Bharat Biotech for additional COVID-19 vaccines on April 28, 2021.
“It is clarified that 100 per cent advance of Rs 1732.50 cr (after TDS Rs. 1699.50 cr) was released to Serum Institute of India (SII) on 28.04.2021 for 11 crore doses of Covishield vaccine during May, June and July, and was received by them on 28.04.2021.As on date, against the last order of 10 crore doses for supplies of Covishield vaccine, 8.744 crore doses have been delivered till May 3, 2021” the statement said.
The statement further read, “Additionally, 100 per cent advance of Rs 787.50 cr (after TDS Rs. 772.50 cr) was released on 28.04.2021 to Bharat Biotech India Ltd (BBIL) for 05 crore Covaxin doses during May, June and July, and was received by them on 28.04.2021. As on date against the last order of 02 crore doses for supplies of Covaxin vaccine, 0.8813 crore doses have been delivered till May 3, 2021.”
The Government of India, as of May 2, 2021, has released more than 16.54 crore vaccine doses to various states and UTs at no cost. As per the statement released on Monday, more than 78 lakh doses are still available with state and Ut governments. In the next three days, the Centre plans to provide additional 56 lakh doses to states and UTs.
The Ministry also added that the Centre will continue to procure 50 per cent of the monthly Central Drugs Laboratory (CDL) cleared vaccines and make it available to the various state governmnet ‘totally free of cost’, under the Liberalised Pricing and Accelerated National COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy.