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Armed with Indian vaccine, Bangladesh to start inoculation soon

India's gift to Bangladesh: 20 lakh doses of Covid 19 vaccine

Bangladesh is now set to start its Coronavirus vaccination drive much earlier than anticipated. The country will receive 20 lakh doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca developed Covishield which has been manufactured by the Serum Institute of India as a gift from India. Another 15 lakh doses of Covishield will also reach the country through Beximco Pharmaceuticals, the Daily Star said.

"In total, we will get 35 lakh doses of vaccine tomorrow. We will start vaccination with this and then the rest of the vaccines will continue to come," the newspaper quoted Bangladesh foreign minister AK Abdul Momen as saying.

Russia and China among other countries have also expressed their keenness to supply vaccines to the south Asian country.

As Bangladesh gears up to celebrate 50 years of independence in March, the early vaccination drive will provide the much needed relief to the Sheikh Hasina government.

“There was never a doubt about India supplying the vaccines to Bangladesh on time though there have been various reports from time to time which created uncertainty. For India, Bangladesh is crucial and expanded bilateral co-operation will continue,” an insider who did not wish to be identified told IndiaNarrative.com.

IndiaNarrative.com had earlier reported that India was remain firm on its plan to supply vaccines to Bangladesh and other neighbouring countries and that the consignments would reach by January end-February. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is slated to visit Dhaka to participate in the functions commemorating 50 years of Independence on March 26. The year-long celebrations also mark the birth centenary of Banganadhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

In December, Modi and his Bangladesh in a bilateral summit, promised to increase co-operation between the two neighbours. Experts said that the renewed thrust to bilateral relations will give a new dimension to ties between the two neighbours.

Meanwhile, as India sent ‘Made in India’ Covid 19 vaccines to several countries, it showcased itself as the “pharmacy of the world.” It exported bulk doses of Hydroxychloroquine and paracetamol tablets in the initial phase of the Coronavirus pandemic as well.

According to India Brand Equity Foundation, India, aided by lower prices, currently supplies over 50 per cent of global vaccines.