In an exclusive interview with India Today’s consulting editor Rajdeep Sardesai, co-chairman and Managing Director of Dr Reddy’s Laboratories GV Prasad and RDIF CEO Kirill Dmitriev shed light on his efforts to bring about a Covid-19 vaccine in India.
“We have signed an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Russian Development Investment Fund (RDIF). Hope to bring vaccine (Sputnik-V) to India as soon as possible,” GV Prasad said. He went on to add, “The vaccine effort is quite immense and unprecedented Each company is trying a different approach.”
Prasad went on to say, “We have partnered with RDIF. We felt that the signs are good. We are trying to get this in the shortest period of time.”
“We had to get the approval of Drug Controller General (DCG) of India for trial. It will take time, several months to come,” GV Prasad added.
Responding to a question about Russia’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate, the MD and co-chairman of Dr Reddy’s Laboratories said, “I certainly think they (Russians) are the first to make a vaccine. There are several other efforts.”
GV Prasad told India Today TV, “They are using human cells and that is good. So far, what we know it’s a great shot.”
CEO of RDIF, Kirill Dmitriev said, “We are confident India will play a vital role in fighting Covid-19 Make in India has made pharma sector strong in India.”
Answering questions about doubts raised over Russia’s Sputnik-V vaccine, Dmitriev stated, “It is a clear example of negative propaganda of western companies. Our vaccine is based on human cells. Western vaccines have not been tested and competitors are trying to attack. Our vaccine is safe and much advanced.”
“We have four courses and delivery by November subject to the approval of regulatory authorities. People may get a vaccine. More than 40,000 people may get the vaccine by then, Kirill Dmitriev told India Today.
He went on to add, “Our vaccine has been tested for decades. The US Army has been using viruses for decades and we are doing the tests since.”
“Our expectation is by November with due regulatory authority approval,” Kirill Dmitriev said adding, “We have followed strict procedure just like India.”