Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Pune on Saturday to review coronavirus vaccine development work at facilities there, the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said.
"Tomorrow, PM @narendramodi will embark on a 3 city visit to personally review the vaccine development & manufacturing process. He will visit the Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad, Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad & Serum Institute of India in Pune," the PMO tweeted.
"As India enters a decisive phase of the fight against COVID-19, PM @narendramodis visit to these facilities & discussions with the scientists will help him get a first hand perspective of the preparations, challenges & roadmap in Indias endeavour to vaccinate its citizens," the PMO added. Modi will first visit pharma major Zydus Cadila's plant near Ahmedabad to get information about its vaccine development, Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said.
The prime minister will reach the plant, located in the Changodar industrial area, over 20 km from Ahmedabad, around 9.30 am, an official said. Zydus Cadila had announced that the phase-I clinical trial of its vaccine candidate ZyCoV-D was over and it has commenced phase-II clinical trials from August.
Modi will then fly to Hyderabad where he is scheduled to visit vaccine maker Bharat Biotech's facility, an official said. After landing at Hakimpet Air Force station, Modi will reach Bharat Biotech's facility at Genome Valley at 1.30 pm.
The facility is around 50 km from Hyderabad. Bharat Biotech's Covaxin is undergoing phase-3 trials.
After his hour-long visit to the facility, the PM will proceed to Pune, where he will visit the Serum Institute of India (SII), which has partnered with global pharma giant AstraZeneca and the Oxford University for the vaccine. The prime minister will reach Serum Institute campus around 4.30 pm, an official said.
Modi's hour-long visit to SII is aimed at reviewing the status of the vaccine candidate for coronavirus infection and to know about its launch, production and distribution mechanism, he said. The PM will fly back to Delhi in the evening, the official said.