India announced that it will be sending a “gift” of COVID-19 vaccines to Sri Lanka next week. Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has announced, the vaccine will reach the country on January 27.
The country will be getting 500,000 doses of the “made-in-India” Covishield vaccine. Sri Lanka becomes the eighth nation to receive India’s gist of COVID-19 vaccines since it began its country-wide mega immunization program on January 16.
Starting Wednesday, India has gifted vaccines to seven countries in the region as part of its neighbourhood first policy, to Bhutan 150,000 doses; to Maldives 100,000 does, to Nepal around 1 million doses, to Bangladesh around 2 million doses, Myanmar received 1.5 million doses, Seychelles was given 50,000 doses while Mauritius was gifted 100,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses.
India was so far waiting for regulatory approval from Sri Lankan and Afghan authorities. The drug regulatory body of Sri Lanka i.e. National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) gave ago ahead to Oxford AstraZeneca’s vaccine on Friday.
The Indian embassy in Sri Lanka had welcomed the development, tweeting, and “his clears the way for scheduling delivery of the vaccine from #India to #lka.”
The first jabs are expected to be given to health care workers in the country. Colombo is expected to procure more India manufactured vaccines commercially later.
Sri Lankan Healthcare Personnel were among the personnels of 13 countries who India trained last week.
For two days, on January 19 and 20, India trained foreign personnels in administrating COVID vaccines. These were from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Bahrain, Brazil, Mauritius, Morocco, Oman, Seychelles, and Sri Lanka.
As part of the Indian navy’s mission Sagar 1, India has provided medicine to Sri Lanka. India supported 1990 Emergency Ambulance service also helped the country in a major way to deal with the COVID crisis.